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FIRST edit 

ion, published in three volumes, 1768 — 1771. 


> » ten , 



, „ eighteen , 

, 1788— 1797. 


, „ twenty , 

, 1801— 1810. 


, „ twenty , 

, 1815—1817. 


, „ twenty , 

, 1823 — 1824. 


, „ twenty-one , 

, 1830 — 1842. 


, „ twenty-two , 

» 1853—1860. 


, „ twenty-five , 

, 1875— 1889. 


, ninth edition and eleven 

supplementary volumes, 

1902 — 1903. 


, published in twenty-nine volume 

■s, 1910 — 1911. 


in all countries subscribing to the 

Bern Convention 



of the 

All rtghts resented 









New York 

Encyclopaedia Britannica, Inc. 
342 Madison Avenue 

Copyright, in the Unhed States of America, 1910, 


The EncyclopEedia Britannica Company. 




A. A. T. 

A. Ca. 
A. C. MeG. 

A. E. G.* 

A. E. H. 
A. E. H. L. 

A. Fi.* 


F. K. 


F, P. 





A.H. G. 

A. H. S. 
A. H.-S. 
A. J. G. 

A. Mw. 

Arthur Augustus Tilley, M.A. 

Fellow and Lecturer in Modern Languages, King's College, Cambridge. Author of -\ Estienne. 
The Literature of the French Renaissance ; &c. 

Arthur Cayley, LL.D., F.R.S. 

See the biographical article: Cayley, Arthur. 

Arthur Cushman McGiffert, M.A., Ph.D., D.D. 

Professor of Church History, Union Theological Seminary, New York. Author of _ 

-j Equation. 

History of Christianity in the Apostolic Age; &c. 

Editor of the Historia Ecclesia of 1 Euseblus - of Caesarea. 

Rev. Alfred Ernest Garvie, M.A., D.D. 

Principal of New College, Hampstead. Member of the Board of Theology and. 
the Board of Philosophy, London University. Author of Studies in the Inner Life 
of Jesus ; &c. 

A. E. Houghton. 

Formerly Correspondent of the Standard in Spain. Author of Restoration of the ~ 
Bourbons in Spain. 

Augustus Edward Hough Love, M.A., D.Sc, F.R.S. 

Sedleian Professor of Natural Philosophy in the University of Oxford. Hon. . 
Fellow of Queen's College. Formerly Fellow of St John's College, Cambridge. 
Secretary of the London Mathematical Society. 

Alexander Fisher. 

Expert Examiner to the Board of Education, London. Gold Medallist, Barcelona. . 
Hon. Associate, Royal College of Art. Author of The Art of Enamelling on Metals; 
&c. I 

A. F. Kendrick. ( J" 

Keeper of the Victoria and Albert Museum, South Kensington. \ 

Albert Frederick Pollard, M.A., F.R.Hist.Soc. f 

Fellow of All Souls' College, Oxford. Professor of English History in the University J 
of London. Assistant Editor of the Dictionary of National Biography, 1893-1901. 1 
Author of England under the Protector Somerset ; Life of Thomas Cranmer ; &c. [ 

Rev. Alexander Gordon, M.A. f 

Lecturer on Church History in the University of Manchester. |_ 

Arthur Hassall, M.A. 

Student and Tutor of Christ Church, Oxford. Author of A Handbook of European 
History; The Balance of Power; &c. Editor of the 3rd edition of T. H. Dyer's 
History of Modern Europe. 

Alan Henderson Gardiner, M.A. 

Joint Editor of the New Hieroglyphic Dictionary, Berlin. Formerly Worcester 
Reader in Egyptology, University of Oxford. 

Rev. A. H. Sayce, Litt.D., LL.D. 

See the biographical article: Sayce, A. H. 

Sir A. Houtum-Schindler, CLE. 

General in the Persian Army. Author of Eastern Persian Irak. 

Rev. Alexander James Grieve, M.A., B.D. r 

Professor of New Testament and Church History at the United Independent) 
College, Bradford. Sometime Registrar of Madras University and Member of 1 
Mysore Educational Service. L 

Allen Mawer, M.A. r 

Professor of English Language and Literature, Armstrong College, Newcastle-on- J 
Tyne. Fellow of Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge. Formerly Lecturer in 1 
English at the University of Sheffield. L 





Embroidery {in part). 

Elizabeth, Queen; 
Eraser; Englefleld; 
English History (VII. and 


Europe: History {in part). 

Egypt: Ancient, Religion, 



Epistle (m part). 

England (V.). 

1 A complete list, showing all individual contributors, appears in the final volume. 



A. HcM. 

A. m: c. 

A. M. CI 


A. So." 


A. S. C. 











C. E. N. R. 
C. F. B. 

C. H. Ha. 
C. W. C. 0. 

C. W. W. 

D. G. H. 

D. J. M. 
D. M. W. 

D. S. M * 

Alexander Macmorran, K.C., M.A. 

Bencher of the Middle Temple. Author of works on the Local Government Act 
1888; Local Government Act 1894; London Government Act 1899; & c - 

Agnes Mary Clerke. 

See the biographical article: Clerke, A. M. 


England: X. (in part). 


Agnes Muriel Clay (Mrs Wilde). f 

Formerly Resident Tutor of Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford. Joint Author of Sources i Eupatridae. 
of Roman History, 133-70 B.C. I 

Alfred Newton, F.R.S. f Eider; 

See the biographical article : Newton, Alfred. I Emeu. 

Adam Sedgwick, M.A., F.R.S. f 

Professor of Zoology at the Imperial College of Science and Technology, London. J Embryology 
Fellow, and formerly Tutor, of Trinity College, Cambridge. Professor of Zoology | 
in the University of Cambridge, 1907-1909. I 

Alan Summerly Cole, C.B. f 

Assistant Secretary for Art, Board of Education, 1900-1908. Author of Ancient -J Embroidery (in part). 
Needle Point and Pillow Lace; Embroidery and Lace; Ornament in European 
Silks; &c. L 

Bacon Scholar of Gray's Inn, 1900. 
Editor of Encyclopaedia of the Laws 

Arthur William Holland. 

Formerly Scholar of St John's College, Oxford. 

Alexander Wood Renton, M.A., LL.B. 

Puisne Judge of the Supreme Court of Ceylon. 
of England. 

Rev. Charles Boutell, M.A. (1812-1877). 

Author of English Heraldry; A Manual of British Archaeology ; &c. 

Sir Charles Norton Edgcumbe Eliot, K.C.M.G., C.B., M.A., LL.D., D.C.L. 
Vice-Chancellor of Sheffield University. H.M.'s Commissioner and Ccmmander-in- 
Chief for the British East Africa Protectorate ; Agent and Consul-General at „ 
Zanzibar; Consul-General for German East Africa, 1900-1904. Formerly Fellow 
of Trinity College, Oxford. Author of Turkey in Europe; Letters from the Far 
East ; &c. 

Charles Edmund Newton Robinson, M.A. 

Trinity College, Cambridge. Barrister-at-Law, Inner Temple. 
Epfe Club, London. Author of The Golden Hind ; &c. 


[ Eminent Domain. 

I Effigies (in part). 

Esthonia (in part). 


Member -j Eugenius III. and IV. 

English History (I., II., III. 
IV., V., VI.). 

Founder of the ^ Epee de Combat. 

Charles Francis Bastable, M.A., LL.D. r 

Regius Professor of Laws and Professor of Political Economy in the University of J r-no-ijct, r;..... 
Dublin. Author of Public Finance; Commerce of Nations; Theory of International] r<n S usn finance. 
Trade. \_ 

Carlton Huntley Hayes, A.M., Ph.D. 

Assistant Professor of History in Columbia University, New York City. 
of the American Historical Association. 

Charles William Chadwick Oman, M.A., F.S.A. 

Chichele Professor of Modern History, Oxford University. Fellow of All Souls' 
College. Fellow of the British Academy. Corresponding Member of the Madrid • 
Academia de la Historia. Author of The Art of War in the Middle Ages; The Great 
Revolt of 138 1 ; Warwick the King-maker; &c. 

Sir Charles William Wilson, K.C.B., K.C.M.G., F.R.S. (1836-1907). 

Major-General, Royal Engineers. Secretary to the North American Boundary 
Commission, 1858-1862. British Commissioner on the Servian Boundary Commis- 
sion. Director-General of the Ordnance Survey, 1886-1894. Director-General of 
Military Education, 1895-1898. Author of From Korti to Khartoum; Life of Lord 
Clive; &c. 

David George Hogarth, M.A. 

Keeper of the Ashmolean Museum, and Fellow of Magdalen College, Oxford. Fellow 
of the British Academy. Excavated at Paphos, 1888; Naukratis, 1899 and 1903; 
Ephesus, 1904-1905; Assiut, 1906-1907. Director, British School at Athens, 
1897-1900; Director, Cretan Exploration Fund, 1899. 

David Hannay. 

Formerly British Vice-Consul at Barcelona. Author of Short History of Royal Navy, - 
1217-1688; Life of Emilio Castelar; &c. 

D. J. Matthews. 

Hydrographer, Laboratory of the Marine Biological Association of the United - 
Kingdom, Plymouth. 

Sir Donald Mackenzie Wallace, K.C.I.E., K.C.V.O. 

Extra Groom of the Bedchamber to H.M. King George V. Director of the Foreign 
Department of The Times, 1891-1899. Member of Institut de Droit International 
and Officer de l'lnstruction Publique of France. Joint Editor of New Volumes" 
(10th ed.) of the Encyclopaedia Britannica. Author of Russia; Egypt and the 
Egyptian Question ; The Web of Empire ; &c. 

David Samuel Margoliouth, M.A., D.Litt. 

Laudian Professor of Arabic, Oxford. Fellow of New College. Author of Arabic j 
Papyri of the Bodleian' Library; Mohammed and the Rise of Islam; Cairo, Jerusalem ) 

Erzerum (in part); 
Erzingan (in part); 
Euphrates (in part). 


Espagnols sur Mer. 

English Channel (in part). 

Egypt: Modern History 

(in part); 
Europe: History (in part). 

and Damascus. 

f Egypt: History (Mahommedan 
Period) ; 



E. A. S* 

E. Br. 

Edward Anthony Spitzka. C 

Professor of General Anatomy, Jefferson Medical College and Hospital, Philadelphia. J Electrocution 

Member of Association of American Anatomists, American Anthropologists' ] 
Association, &c. I 


B. T. 


C. B. 











Ernest Barker, M.A. 

Fellow of, and Lecturer in Modern History at, St John's College, Oxford. 
Fellow and Tutor of Merton College. Craven Scholar, 1895. 

Edward Burnett Tylor, D.C.L., LL.D., F.R.S. 
See the biographical article: Tylor, E. B. 

Rt. Rev. Edward Cuthbert Butler, O.S.B., M.A., D.Litt. (Dublin). 

Abbot of Downside Abbey, Bath. Author of " The Lausiac History of Palladius 
in Cambridge Texts and Studies, vol. vi. 

Edmund Gosse, LL.D. 

See the biographical article : Gosse, Edmund W. 

r Electors; 
Formerly < Emperor; 
I Empire. 




Ed. M. 

Emile Garcke, M.Inst.E.E. 

Managing Director of British Electric Traction Co., Ltd. 
Electrical Undertakings; &c. 

Sir Eldon Gorst, K.C.B. 

See the biographical article: Gorst, Sir John Eldon. 

Ernest Arthur Gardner, M.A. 

See the biographical article : Gardner, Percy. 

Edward Heawood, M.A. 

Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge. Librarian of 
Society, London. 

Eduard Meyer, Ph.D., D.Litt. (Oxon.), LL.D. 

Professor of Ancient History in the University of Berlin. 

Author of Manual of 

f Elegy; Epic Poetry; Epilogue; 
■I Epistle: Poetry; Essay; 
[ Etheredge; Euphuism. 

Electricity Supply: 


Egypt: Finance (in part). 


the Royal Geographical i 

Author of Geschichte des 

E. S. P. 

E. V. 

E. Wo. 

F. C. C. 

F. G. M. 


F. J. H. 

Eleusis; Elis; Epidaurus; 
Erechtheum; Eretria. 



Egypt: History (II. in part). 

Ember Days and Ember 

Egypt: Modern, Army. 



Essex, Kingdom of. 

Ermine Street. 

F. LI. G. 

F. R. C. 
F. R. M. 

F. W. M. 

F. W. R.* 

G. C. W. 

G. E. 

G, G. C, 

Alterthums; Geschichte des alien Agyptens; Die Israeliten und ihre Nachbarstdmme. 

Edward Stanley Poole. 

See the biographical article: Poole, Reginald Stuart. 

Rev. Edmund Venables (1819-1805). 

Canon and Precentor of Lincoln. Author of Episcopal Palaces of England. 

Field-Marshal Sir Evelyn Wood, V.C., G.C.M.G. 
See the biographical article : Wood, Sir Evelyn. 

Frederick Cornwallis Conybeare, M.A., D.Th. (Giessen). 

Fellow of the British Academy. Formerly Fellow of University College, Oxford. 
Author of The Ancient Armenian Texts of Aristotle; Myth, Magic and Morals; &c. 

Frederick George Meeson Beck, M.A. 

Fellow and Lecturer in Classics, Clare College, Cambridge. 

Francis John Haverfield, M.A., LL.D. (Aberdeen), F.S.A. 

Camden Professor of Ancient History in the University of Oxford. Fellow of 
Brasenose College, Oxford. Fellow of the British Academy. Member of the 
German Imperial Archaeological Institute. Formerly Senior Censor, Student, 
Tutor and Librarian of Christ Church, Oxford. Ford's Lecturer, 1906. Author of 
Monographs on Roman History; &c. 

Francis Llewelyn Griffith, M.A., Ph.D. 

Reader in Egyptology, Oxford University. Formerly Scholar of Queen's College, 1 T? a „ n i- A • t 
Oxford. Editor of the Archaeological Survey and Archaeological Reports of the ] J! *yP»- Anc ^ni. 
Egypt Exploration Fund. Fellow of Imperial German Archaeclogical Institute. I 

Frank R. Cana. 

Author of South Africa from the Great Trek to the Union. 

Francis Richard Maunsell, C.M.G. r 

Lieutenant-Colonel, R.A. Military Vice-Consul, Sivas, Trebizond, Van (Kurdistan), J Erzerum [in part) ; 
1897-1898. Military Attache, British Embassy, Constantinople, 1901-1905. 1 Erzingan (in part). 
Author of Central Kurdistan ; &c. L 

Frederick William Maitland, LL.D. 

See the biographical article : Maitland, F. W. 

Frederick William Rudler, I.S.O., F.G.S. 

Curator and Librarian of the Museum of Practical Geology, London, 1879-1902. 
President of the Geologists' Association, 1887-1889. 

Egypt: Modern (in part). 

I English Law. 


George Charles Williamson, Litt.D. r 

Chevalier of the Legion of Honour. Author of Portrait Miniatwes; Life of Richard] Rneleheart 
Cos-ivay, R.A.: George Engleheart; Portrait Drawings; &c. Editor of new edition 1 
of Bryan's Dictionary of Painters and Engravers', [_ 

Rev. George Edmundson, M.A., F.R. Hist. S. r 

Formerly Fellow and Tutor of Brasenose College, Oxford. Ford's Lecturer, 
1909-1910. Employed by British Government in preparation of the British 1 Egmont, Count of. 


case in the British Guiana- Venezuelan and British Guiana-Brazilian boundary I 

George Goudie Chisholm, M.A, r 

Lecturer on Geography in the University of Edinburgh. Secretary of the Royal J Euro P e: Geography and 
Scottish Geographical Society. Author of Handbook of Commercial Geography. 1 Statistics. 
Editor of Longman's Gazetteer of the World. {, 


G. H. C. 

G. S. C. 

H. A. E. 



H. Ch. 

H. C. R. 

H. F. T. 

Author of Insects: i Entomology 

Egypt : Military Operations, 


George Herbert Carpenter, B.Sc. 

Professor of Zoology in the Royal College of Science, Dublin. 
Their Structure and Life. 

Sir George Sydenham Clarke, G.C.M.G., G.C.I.E., F.R.S. 

Governor of Bombay. Author of Imperial Defence; Russia's Great Sea Power; 
The Last Great Naval War ; &c. 

Hans A. E. Driesch, Ph.D., LL.D. r 

Gifford Lecturer at the University of Aberdeen, 1907-1908. Author of Die Or- J Embryology : Physiology of 
ganischen Regulationen ; Der Vitalismus als Geschichte und als Lehre; The Science 1 Development, 
and Philology of the Organism ; &c. L 

Henry Bradley, M.A., Ph.D. f 

Fellow of the British Academy. Joint Editor of the New English Dictionary A English Literature (I.). 
(Oxford). Author of The Story of the Goths; The Making of English; &c. L 

Hugh Chisholm, M.A. r 

Formerly Scholar of Corpus Christi College, Oxford. Editor of the nth edition 4 English History: XII. {in part). 
of the Encyclopaedia Britannica. Co-Editor of the 10th edition. (_ 

Major-General Sir Henry Creswicke Rawlinson, Bart., G.C.B. 
See the biographical article: Rawlinson, Sir H. C. 

Rev. Henry Fanshawe Tozer, M.A., F.R.G.S. f 

Hon. Fellow and formerly Tutor of Exeter College, Oxford. Fellow of the British 1 
Academy. Corresponding Member of the Historical Society of Greece. Author of -\ Euboea. 
History of Ancient Geography; Classical Geography; Lectures on the Geography of 
Greece; &c. 

Euphrates {in part). 

H. Ha. 
H. H. W. 

H. M. R. 

H. M. R. M. 
H. $. G. 

H. R. M. 

Heber Hart, LL.D. 

Barrister-at-Law, Middle Temple. 

Estate and House Agents. 

Rev. Henry Herbert Williams, M.A. 

Fellow, Tutor and Lecturer in Philosophy, Hertford College, Oxford. Examining^ Ethics {in pdri). 
Chaplain to the Bishop of Llandaff. 

Hugh Munro Ross. 

Formerly Exhibitioner of Lincoln College, Oxford. 
Supplement. Author of British Railways. 

Editor of The Times Engineering < English Channel {in part). 

Hilda Mary R. Murray, M.A. 

Lecturer on English at Royal Holloway College. 

English Language {in part). 

England : Physical Geography 
(II., IV.). 






van D. 


W. C. D 



■j Ethics {in part). 

Harry Norman Gardiner, A.M. f" 

Professor of Philosophy, Smith College, Northampton, U.S.A. Editor of Jonathan ■< Edwards, Jonathan {in part). 
■Edwards — a Retrospect. [_ 

Hugh Robert Mill, D.Sc, LL.D. 

Director of British Rainfall Organization. Formerly President of the Royal Meteoro- 
logical Society. Hon. Member of Vienna Geographical Society. Hon. Correspond- 
ing Member of Geographical Societies of Paris, Berlin, Budapest, St Petersburg, 
Amsterdam, &c. British Delegate to International Conference on the Exploration 
of the Sea at Christiania, 1901. Author of The Realm of Nature; The Clyde Sea 
Area; The English Lakes; The International Geography. Editor of British Rainfall, 

Henry Sidgwick, LL.D. 

See the biographical article: Sidgwick, H. 

Henry Sweet, M.A., Ph.D., LL.D. 

University Reader in Phonetics, Oxford. Member of the Academies of Munich, J Wcneranto 
Berlin, Copenhagen and Helsingfors. Author of A History of English Sounds since 1 
the Earliest Period; A Handbook of Phonetics; &c. [_ 

Henry van Dyke, A.M., D.D., LL.D. 

Professor of English Literature, Princeton University, U.S.A. Author of The Poetry ■ 
of Tennyson; The Ruling Passion; The Spirit of America; &c. 

Henry William Carless Davis, M.A. 

Fellow and Tutor of Balliol College, Oxford. Fellow of All Souls' College, Oxford, - 
1895-1902. Author of England under the Normans and Angevins; Charlemagne. 

Israel Abrahams, M.A. 

Reader in Talmudic and Rabbinic Literature, University of Cambridge. President, 
Jewish Historical Society of England. Author of A Short History of Jewish Litera- " 
ture; Jewish Life in the Middle Ages; &c. 


J. A. F. 

J. A. H. 

J. A. H. M. 
J. G. C. A. 

John Ambrose Fleming, M.A., D.Sc, F.R.S. 

Pender Professor of Electrical Engineering in the University of London. Fellow of 
University College, London. Formerly Fellow of St John's College, Cambridge. 
Vice-President of the Institution of Electrical Engineers. Author of The Principles 
of Electric Wave Telegraphy ; Magnets and Electric Currents ; &c. 

John Allen Howe, B.Sc. 

Curator and Librarian of the Museum of Practical Geology, London. Author of - 
Geology of Building Stones. 

Sir James Augustus Henry Murray, LL.D., D.C.L., Litt.D. 
Seethe biographical article: Murray, Sir James A. H. 

John George Clark Anderson, M.A. 

Censor and Tutor of Christ Church, Oxford. Formerly Fellow of Lincoln College; - 
Craven Fellow, Oxford, 1896. Conington Prizeman, 1893. 

Eleanor of Aquitaine. 

Einhorn, David ; 
Elijah Wilna ; 
Elisha ben Abuyah. 
Electrical Machine ; 
Electricity ; 
Electricity Supply ; 
Electrokinetics ; 
Electromagnetism ; 
Electrometer ; 
Electrophorus ; 
. Electroscope ; Electrostatics. 

England : Geology (III.) ; 

English Language. 

















J. HI. R. 
J. J. T. 


J. L. M. 

J. M. M. 
J. M. Ma. 

J. P. Pe. 

J. S. F. 

J. S. M. 

J. T. Be. 
J. T. C. 

J. W. He. 

K. S. 

L. D.* 
L. J. S. 

L. V> 

John Gray McKendrick, M.D., LL.D., F.R.S., F.R.S. (Edin.). J 

Emeritus Professor of Physiology at the University of Glasgow. Professor of "j Equilibrium. 
Physiology, 1876-1906. Author of Life in Motion; Life of Helmholtz; Sec. I 

John George Robertson, M.A., Ph.D. f 

Professor of German Language and Literature, University of London. Editor of 
the Modern Language Journal. Author of History of German Literature; Schiller 
after a Century ; &c. 

John Henry Freese, M.A. 

Formerly Fellow of St John's College, Cambridge. 

Rev. James Hardy Ropes, D.D. ( 

Bussey Professor of New Testament Criticism and Interpretation, and Dexter J 
Lecturer on Biblical Literature, Harvard University. Author of The Apostolic \ 
Age in the Light of Modern Criticism; &c. I 

John Holland Rose, M.A., Litt.D. 

, Lecturer on Modern History to the Cambridge University Local Lectures Syndicate. 
Author of Life of Napoleon I. ; Napoleonic Studies ; The Development of the European 
Nations ; The Life of Pitt ; &c. I 

Sir Joseph John Thomson, D.Sc., LL.D., Ph.D., F.R.S. r 

Cavendish Professor of Experimental Physics, Cambridge. Fellow of Trinity 
College. President of the British Association, 1909-1910. Author of A Treatise < Electric Waves 

on the Motion of Vortex Rings; Application of Dynamics to Physics and Chemistry; 
Recent Researches in Electricity and Magnetism ; &c. I 

Sir Joseph Larmor, M.A., D.Sc, LL.D., F.R.S. 

Fellow of St John's College, Cambridge. Lucasian Professor of Mathematics in 
Cambridge University. Secretary of the Royal Society. Professor of Natural 
Philosophy, Queen's College, Galway, and in the Queen's University of Ireland, 
1 880-1 885. Author of Ether and Matter, and various memoirs on Mathematics and 

John Linton Myres, M.A., F.S.A. r 

Wykeham Professor of Ancient History in the University of Oxford. Formerly] 
Gladstone Professor of Greek and Lecturer in Ancient Geography, University of 1 

Ephesians, Epistle to the, 

Enghien, Due d\ 

Energetics ; 
Energy {in part). 

Liverpool, and Lecturer on Classical Archaeology, University of Oxford. 

John Malcolm Mitchell. 

Sometime Scholar of Queen's College, Oxford. Lecturer in Classics, East London ■ 
College (University of London). Joint Editor of Grote's History of Greece. 

John Matthews Manly, A.M., Ph.D. 

Professor and Head of the Department of English in the University of Chicago. 
Managing Editor of Modern Philology. Author of The Language of Chaucer's Legend ■ 
of Good Women; &c. Editor of Specimens of the Pre-Shakespearean Drama; 
English Prose, 1 137-1890; English Poetry, 1170-1802; &c. 

Rev. John Punnett Peters, Ph.D., D.D. 

Canon Residentiary, Cathedral of New York. Formerly Professor of Hebrew in the 
University of Pennsylvania. Director of the University Expedition to Babylonia, 
1888-1895. Author of Nippur, or Explorations and Adventures on the Euphrates. 

John Smith Flett, D,Sc, F.G.S. 

Petrographer to the Geological Survey. Formerly Lecturer on Petrology in Edin- 
burgh University. Neill Medallist of the Royal Society of Edinburgh. Bigsby " 
Medallist of the Geological Society of London. 

John Sturgeon Mackay, M.A., LL.D., F.R.S. (Edin.). 

Chief Mathematical Master at Edinburgh Academy, 1873-1904. First President 
of the Edinburgh Mathematical Society. Author of Arithmetical Exercises;' 
Elements of Euclid. 

John T. Bealby. 

Joint Author of Stanford's Europe. Formerly Editor of the Scottish Geographical ■ 
Magazine. Translator of Sven Hedin's Through Asia, Central Asia and Tibet; &c, 

Joseph Thomas Cunningham, M.A., F.Z.S. 

Lecturer on Zoology at the South-Western Polytechnic, London. Formerly Fellow 
of University College, Oxford. Assistant Professor of Natural History in the" 
University of Edinburgh. Naturalist to the Marine Biological Association. 

James Wycliffe Headlam, M.A. 

Staff Inspector of Secondary Schools under the Board of Education. Formerly 
Fellow of King's College, Cambridge, and Professor of Greek and Ancient History - 
at Queen's College, London. Author of Bismarck and the Foundation of the German 
Empire; &c. 

Kathleen Schlesinger. 

Author of The Instruments of the Orchestra ; &c. 

Louis Duchesne. 

See the biographical article: Duchesne, L. M. 0. 

Leonard James Spencer, M.A. 

Assistant in the Department of Mineralogy, British Museum. Formerly Scholar of 
Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge, and Harkness Scholar. Editor of the Mineral- 
ogical Magazine. 


Italian Foreign Office (Emigration Department). Formerly Newspaper Corre- 
spondent in East of Europe. Italian Vice-Consul in New Orleans, 1906; Phil- 
adelphia, 1907; and Boston, U.S.A., 1907-1910. Author of Italian Life in Town 
and Country; &c. 

Editor of the Portfolio of Musical ■ 


Erigena {in part). 

English Literature (II.). 

Erech ; 
Eridu ; 
Euphrates {in part). 

Epidiorite ; 


Esthonia {in part). 


Ernest II. 

Epigonion ; 

J" Eleutherius ; 

I Eugenius I. and II. 

f Enstatite ; 
1 Epidote; 
I Erubescite. 



M. G. 

M. H. S. 


M. Ja. 

M. 0. B. 


M. N. T. 


N. M. 


Moses Gaster, Ph.D. (Leipzig). 

Chief Rabbi of the Sephardic Communities of England. Vice-President, Zionist 
Congress, 1898, 1899, 1900. Ilchester Lecturer at Oxford op Slavonic and By- 
zantine Literature, 1886 and 1891. President, Folklore Society of England. Vice- 
President, Anglo-Jewish Association. Author of History of Rumanian Popular 
Literature; &c. 

Marion H. Spielmann, F.S.A. 

Formerly Editor of the Magazine of Art. Member of Fine Art Committee of Inter- 
national Exhibitions of Brussels, Paris, Buenos Aires, Rome, and the Franco-British . 
Exhibition, London. Author of History of "Punch " ; British Portrait Painting 
to the Opening of the Nineteenth Century ; Works of G. F. Watts, R.A . ; British 
Sculpture and Sculptors of To-day ; Henriette Ronner ; &c. 

Morris Jastrow, Ph.D. (Leipzig). 

Professor of Semitic Languages, University of Pennsylvania, U.S.A. Author of 
Religion of the Babylonians and A ssyrians ; &c. 

Maximilian Otto Bismarck Caspari, M.A. 

Reader in Ancient History at London University. Lecturer in Greek at Birming- 
ham University, 1 905-1 908. 

Marcus Niebuhr Tod, M.A. 

Fellow and Tutor of Oriel College, Oxford. University Lecturer in Epigraphy. 
Joint Author of Catalogue of the Sparta Museum. 

Mark Pattison. 

See the biographical article : Pattison, Mark. 

Norman McLean, M.A. 

Lecturer in Aramaic, Cambridge University. Fellow and Hebrew Lecturer, Christ's 
College, Cambridge. Joint Editor of the larger Cambridge Septuagint. 

Oliver Elton, M.A. 

Professor of English Literature at the University of Liverpool. Author of Modern 
Studies; The Augustan Ages; Michael Drayton; &c. 

Eminescu, Michail. 

Effigies (in part). 

1 Ereshkigal. 


Erasmus (in pari). 

Ephraem Syrus. 


J. R. H. 





P. M. T. C. 


S. A. 




A. S. M 




H. C. 

Osbert John Radcliffe Howarth, M.A. 

Christ Church, Oxford. Geographical Scholar, 
British Association. 

1901. Assistant Secretary of the 



j English Literature (III., IV.). 

England: Topography, Popu- 
lation and Industries (I., 
I VI., VIII., IX.); 
[ English Channel (in part). 

\ Esthonia (in part). 

Prince Peter Alexeivttch Kropotkin. 

See the biographical article: Kropotkin, Prince P. A. 

Philip Lake, M.A., F.G.S. r 

Lecturer on Physical and Regional Geography in Cambridge University. Formerly J Enrone* Geoloev 

of the Geological Survey of India. Author of Monograph of British Cambrian 1 * ^eoiogy. 

Trilobites. Translator and Editor of Kayser's Comparative Geology. [_ 

Mrs Craigie (" John Oliver Hobbes "). 

See the biographical article : Craigie, P. M. T. 

Percy Stafford Allen, M.A. 

Fellow of Merton College, Oxford. 

Editor of the Letters of Erasmus. 

Robert Adamson, LL.D. 

See the biographical article : Adamson, R. 

Robert Alexander Stewart Macalister, M.A., F.S.A. 
Director of Excavations for the Palestine Exploration Fund. 

Sir Richard Claverhouse Jebb, D.C.L., LL.D. 
See the biographical article: Jebb, Sir Richard C. 

Eliot, George. 
J Erasmus (in part). 

S Erigena (in part). 

J Ekron; 

\ Eleutheropolis. 

4 Euripides. 

R. H. V. 

Egypt: Military Operations, 






Rev. Robert Henry Charles, M.A. , D.D., D.Litt. f_, . _ . . 

Grinfield Lecturer, and Lecturer in Biblical Studies, Oxford. Fellow of the British J *- nocn > B00K . 0I » 
Academy. Formerly Professor of Biblical Greek, Trinity College, Dublin. Author] Esther: Additions to. 
of Critical History of the Doctrine of a Future Life ; Book of Jubilees ; &c. I 

Colonel Robert Hamilton Vetch, R.E., C.B. 

Employed on defences of Bermuda, Bristol Channel, Plymouth Harbour and Malta, 
1861-1876. Secretary of R.E. Institute, Chatham, 1877-1883. Commanded R.E. 
Submarine Mining Batt., 1884. Deputy Inspector-General of Fortifications, 1889- 
1894. Author of Gordon's Campaign in China; Life of Lieutenant-General Sir 
Gerald Graham. Editor of the Professional Papers of the Corps of R.E. ; also the R.E. 
Journal, 1 877-1 884. 

Ronald John McNeill, M.A. f" Emmet, Robert; 

Christ Church, Oxford. Barrister-at^Law. Formerly Editor of the St James's -l Emmet, Thomas Addis. 
Gazette, London. [ 

Richard Lydekker, F.R.S., F.Z.S., F.G.S. 

Formerly Member of the Staff of the Geological Survey of India. Author of 
Catalogues of Fossil Mammals, Reptiles and Birds in British Museum ; The Deer of " 
all Lands ; &c. 

Richard Norton. 

Formerly Director of the American School of Classical Studies in Rome, and Pro- - 
fessor of History of Art and Archaeology, Bryn Mawr College, Pennsylvania. t 

Robert Nisbet Bain (d. 1909). f Elizabeth Petrovna; 

Assistant Librarian, British Museum. Author of Scandinavia: the Political History J pjotvos Baron* Eric XIV * 
of Denmark, Norway and Sweden, 1513-^1900; The First Romanovs, 1613 to 1725; 1 _ . .1 . J ., ., *' 

Slavonic Europe: the Political History of Poland and Russia from 1469 to 1796 ; &e. I fcsternazy 01 uaianma. 

Eland; Elephant; 



Etruria (in part). 

R. S. C. 

R. S. P. 

R. W.* 
R. We. 

S. A. C. 

St G. S. 
S. L.-P. 




























T. Se. 

W. A. B. C. 

W. A. P. 
W. Ba. 
W. C. D. W. 
W. C. T. 


Robert Seymour Conway, M. A., D.Litt. (Cantab.). . ,.„,.'[' 

Professor of Latin and Indo-European Philology in the University of Manchester J Etrurja: Language. 
-ofessor of Latin, University College, Cardiff, and Pellow of Gonville and 


Formerly Professor <__ 
Caius College, Cambridge* 

Reginald Stcjart Poole. 

See the biographical article: Poole, Reginald Stuart. 

Richard Williams. 

Richard Webster, A.M. 

Formerly Fellow in Classics, 
Maximianus ; &c. 

Stanley Arthur Cook. . . 

Editor for Palestine Exploration Fund. Lecturer in Hebrew and byriac, and 
formerly Fellow, Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge. Examiner in Hebrew and 
Aramaic, London University, 1904-1908. Council of Royal Asiatic Society, 1904- 
1905. Author of Glossary of Aramaic Inscriptions; The Laws of Moses and the 
Code of Hammurabi; Critical Notes on Old Testament History; Religion of Ancient 
Palestine; &c. 

-j Egypt: History, I. {in part). 
\ Eisteddfod. 

Princeton University. Editor of The Elegies of J Edwards, Jonathan (in pari) 

Eli (in part); 
Elijah (in part) ; 
Elisha (in part) ; 

Essenes (in part). 

Lecturer in Greek in the University of Birmingham. 

St George Stock, M.A- 
Pembroke College, Oxford 

Stanley Lane-Poole, M.A., Litt.D. 

Formerly Professor of Arabic, Dublin University, and Examiner in the University 
of Wales. Corresponding Member of the Imperial Russian Archaeological Society. 
Member of the Khedivial Commission for the Preservation of the Monuments of * 
Arab Art, &c. Author of Life of Lord Stratford de Redcliffe; Life of Sir Harry 
Parkes; Cairo; Turkey; &c. Edited The Koran; The Thousand and One Nights; 

Samuel Rawson Gardiner; LL.D., D.C.L. 
See the biographical article: Gardiner, S. R. 

Sir Spencer Walpole, K.C.B. 

See the biographical article: Walpole, Sir Spencer. 

Egypt: History, II. (in pari). 

{ English History(VIII., IX.,X.). 
I English History: XII. (in part). 


C England: Local 
|_ X. (in part). 



f Elvira, Synod of; 
I Ephesiis, Council of. 

f Epithelial, Endothelial, Glan- 
°fy dular Tissues. 

Essenes (in part). 



Thomas Allan Ingram, M.A 
Trinity College, Dublin. 

Sir Thomas Barclay, M.P. 

Member of the Institute of International Law. Member of the Supreme Council 
: of the Congo Free State. Officer of the Legion of Honour. Author of Problems of 
International Practice and Diplomacy; &c. M.P. for Blackburn, 1910. 

Dr' Theodore Freylinghuysen Collier, Ph.D. 

Assistant Professor of History, Williams College, Williamstown, Mass., U.S.A. 

Thomas Gregor Brodie, M.D., F.R.S. 

Professor of Physiology in the University of Toronto. Author of Essentials 
Experimental Physiology. 

Thomas Kirkup, M.A., LL.D. 

Author of An Inquiry into Socialism; Primer of Socialism; &c. 

Rev. Thomas Kelly Cheyne, LL.D., D.D., D.Litt. 

See the biographical article : Cheyne, T. K. 

Sir Thomas Little Heath, K.C.B., M.A., D.Sc (Cantab.). f 

Assistant Secretary to the Treasury. Formerly Fellow of Trinity College, Cam- -\ Erathosthenes of Alexandria, 
bridge. Author, of Treatise on Conic Sections ; &c. . . ■ l 

Rev. Thomas Roscoe Rede Stebbing, M.A., F.R.S. , F.L.S., F.Z.S. f 

Fellow of King's College, London. Hon. Fellow, and formerly Tutor, of Worcester. 
College, Oxford, Zoological Secretary of Linnaean Society, 1903-1907. Author of 
A History of Crustacea ; The Naturalist of Cumbrae ; &c. 

Thomas Seccombe, M.A. 

Balliol College, Oxford. Lecturer in History, East London and Birkbeck Colleges, . 
University of London. Stanhope Prizeman, Oxford, 1887. Assistant Editor of 
Dictionary of National Biography, 1891-1901. Author of The Age of Johnson; &c. 

Rev. William Augustus Brevoort Coolidge, M.A., F.R.G.S., Ph.D. (Bern). 
Fellow of Magdalen College, Oxford. Professor of English History, St David's 
College, Lampeter, 1880-1881. Author of Guide du Haut Dauphine; The [Range- 
of the T'ddi; Guide to Grindehvald; Guide to Switzerland; The Alps in Nature and 
in History; &c. Editor of the Alpine Journal, 1880-1889; &c. 

Walter Alison Phillips, M.A. 

Formerly Exhibitioner of Merton College and Senior Scholar of St John's College, - 
Oxford. Author of Modern Europe ; &c. 


William Bacher, Ph.D. 

Professor of Biblical Science at the Rabbinical Seminary, Budapest. 
Die exegetische Terminologie der jiidischen Traditionslitteratur ; &c. 

William Cecil Dampier Whetham, M.A., F.R.S. 

Fellow and Tutor of Trinity College, Cambridge. Author of Theory of Solution; 
Recent Development of Physical Science ; The Family and the Nation ; &c. 

English Literature (V., VI.). 


English History (XL); 
Episcopacy; Esquire; 
. Europe: History (in part). 

Author of \ EHas Levita. 

W. Cave Thomas. 

Author of Symmetrical Education ; 
Theory of Light. 

I Electrolysis. 

Mural or Monumental Decoration ; Revised -j Encaustic Painting. 

W. E. Co. 

W. G. 

W. G. M. 

W. Hu. 

W. M. F. P. 
W. 0. 

W. P. A. 

W. P. P. 

W. R. S. 
W. W. 
W. Wr. 


Rt. Rev. William Edward Collins, M.A., D.D. . f _ . . 

Bishop of Gibraltar. Formerly Professor of Ecclesiastical History, King's College, J Establishment; 
London. Lecturer of Selwyn and St John's Colleges, Cambridge. Author of The 1 Eucharist: Reservation. 
Study of Ecclesiastical History; Beginnings of English Christianity; &c. I 

William Garnett, M.A., D.C.L. r 

Educational Adviser to the London County Council. Formerly Fellow and Lecturer J . . .. 

of St John's College, Cambridge. Principal and Professor of Mathematics, Durham 1 Energy (m part). 
College of Science, Newcastfe-on-Tyne. Author of Elementary Dynamics ; &c. [ 

Walter G. M'Millan, F.C.S., M.I.Mech.E. (d. 1904. fpionfrnoh.mic*™. 

Formerly Secretary of the Institute of Electrical Engineers, and Lecturer on-! fjwowooneinisiry, 
Metallurgy, Mason College, Birmingham. Author of A Treatise on Electrometallurgy. (_ Electrometallurgy. 

Rev. William Hunt, M.A., Litt.D. |" 

President of Royal Historical Society, 1 905-1909. Author of History of the English < England, Church of. 
Church, 597-1066; The Church of England in the Middle Ages; &c. [ 

William Matthew Flinders Petrie, F.R.S., D.C.L., Lttt.D. 
See the biographical article: Petrie, W. M. F. 

Egypt: Art and Archaeology. 


Formerly Professor of Chemistry at the University of Leipzig. Nobel Prizeman in J Element 
Chemistry, 1909. Author of Energetische Grundlagen der Kulturwissenschafl; Die A 
Energie ; Prinzipien der Chemie ; &c. [ 

Lieut.-Colonel William Patrick Anderson, M.Inst.CE., F.R.G.S. r 

Chief Engineer, Department of Marine and Fisheries of Canada. Member of J g-s- Lake 
the Geographic Board of Canada. Past President of Canadian Society of Civil 1 ' 

Engineers. L 

William Plane Pycraet, F.Z.S. r 

Assistant in the Zoological Department, British Museum. Formerly Assistant J jj__ 
Linacre Professor of Comparative Anatomy, Oxford. Vice-President of the ] *' 
Selborne Society. Author of A History of Birds ; &c. [ 

(-EH (in part); 
J Elijah (in part); 
[Elisha (in part). 
rEmpedocles (in part); 

William Robertson Smith, LL.D. 

See the biographical article : Smith, W. R. 

William Wallace. 

See the biographical article : Wallace, William (1844-1897). 

Williston Walker, Ph.D., D.D. 

Professor of Church History, Yale University. Author of History of the Congre- 
gational Churches in the United States ; The Reformation ; John Calvin ; &c. 

J. Epictetus (in part) ; 
I Epicurus (in part). 

Eliot, John. 














Electoral Commission. 



Ethnology and 



Employers' Liability and 




Workmen's Compensa- 
















Engineers: Military. 








English soldier-statesman in India, was born at Frodesley in 
Shropshire on the 12th of November 1819. His father was 
Benjamin Edwardes, rector of Frodesley, and his grandfather 
Sir John Edwardes, baronet, eighth holder of a title conferred 
on one of his ancestors by Charles I. in 1644. He was educated 
at a private school and at King's College, London. Through 
the influence of his uncle, Sir Henry Edwardes, he was nominated 
in 1840 to a cadetship in the East India Company; and on his 
arrival in India, at the beginning of 1841, he was posted as 
ensign in the 1st Bengal Fusiliers. He remained with this 
regiment about five years, during which time he mastered the 
lessons of his profession, obtained a good knowledge of Hindustani, 
Hindi and Persian, and attracted attention by the political 
and literary ability displayed in a series of letters which appeared 
in the Delhi Gazette. 

In November 1845, on the breaking out of the first Sikh War, 
Edwardes was appointed aide-de-camp to Sir Hugh (afterwards 
Viscount) Gough, then commander-in-chief in India. On the 
1 8th of December he was severely wounded at the battle of 
Mudki. He soon recovered, however, and fought by the side 
of his chief at the decisive battle of Sobraon (February 10, 1846). 
He was soon afterwards appointed third assistant to the com- 
missioners of the trans-Sutlej territory; and in January 1847 
was named first assistant to Sir Henry Lawrence, the resident 
at Lahore. Lawrence became his great exemplar and in later 
years he was accustomed to attribute to the influence of this 
" father of his public life " whatever of great or good he had 
himself achieved. He took part with Lawrence in the suppression 
of a religious disturbance at Lahore in the spring of 1846, and 
soon afterwards assisted him in reducing, by a rapid movement 
to Jammu, the conspirator Imam-ud-din. In the following 
year a more difficult task was assigned him — the conduct of an 
expedition to Bannu, a district on the Waziri frontier, in which 
the people would not tolerate the presence of a collector, and 
the revenue had consequently fallen into arrear. By his rare 
tact and fertility of resource, Edwardes succeeded in completely 
conquering the wild tribes of the valley without firing a shot, a 
victory which he afterwards looked back upon with more satis- 
faction than upon others which brought him more renown. His 
fiscal arrangements were such as to obviate all difficulty of 

IX. 1 

collection for the future. In the spring of 1848, in consequence 
of the murder of Mr vans Agnew and Lieutenant Anderson at 
Mu'.tan, by order of the diwan Mulraj, and of the raising of the 
standard of revolt by the latter, Lieutenant Edwardes was 
authorized to march against him. He set out immediately with 
a small force, occupied Leiah on the left bank of the Indus, was 
joined by Colonel van Cortlandt, and, although he could not 
attack Multan, held the enemy at bay and gave a check at the 
critical moment to their projects. He won a great victory over 
a greatly superior Sikh force at Kinyeri (June 18), and received 
in acknowledgment of his services the local rank of major. In the 
course of the operations which followed near Multan, Edwardes 
lost his right hand by the explosion of a pistol in his belt. On 
the arrival of a large force under General Whish the siege of 
Multan was begun, but was suspended for several months in 
consequence of the desertion of Shere Singh with his army and 
artillery. Edwardes distinguished himself by the part he took 
in the final operations, begun in December, which ended with 
the capture of the city on the 4th of January 1849. For his 
services he received the thanks of both houses of parliament, 
was promoted major by brevet, and created C.B. by special 
statute of the order. The directors of the East India Company 
conferred on him a gold medal and a good service pension of 
£100 per annum. 

After the conclusion of peace Major Edwardes returned to 
England for the benefit of his health, married during his stay 
there, and wrote and published his fascinating account of the 
scenes in which he had been engaged, under the title of A Year 
on the Punjab Frontier in 1848-1849. His countrymen gave 
him fitting welcome, and the university of Oxford conferred 
on him the degree of D.C.L. In 1851 he returned to India and 
resumed his civil duties in the Punjab under Sir Henry Lawrence. 
In November 1853 he was entrusted with the responsible post 
of commissioner of the Peshawar frontier, and this he held when 
the Mutiny of 1857 broke out. It was a position of enormous 
difficulty, and momentous consequences were involved in the 
way the crisis might be met. Edwardes rose to the height of 
the occasion. He saw as if by inspiration the facts and the needs, 
and by the prompt measures which he adopted he rendered a 
service of incalculable importance, by effecting a reconciliation 
with Afghanistan, and securing the neutrality of the amir and 



the frontier tribes during the war. So effective was his procedure 
for the safety of the border that he was able to raise a large force 
in the Punjab and send it to co-operate in the siege and capture 
of Delhi. In 1859 Edwardes once more went to England, his 
health so greatly impaired by the continual strain of arduous 
work that it was doubtful whether he could ever return to India. 
During his stay he was created K.C.B., with the rank of brevet 
colonel; and the degree of LL.D. was conferred upon him by 
the university of Cambridge. Early in 1862 he again sailed for 
India, and was appointed commissioner of Umballa and agent 
for the Cis-Sutlej states. He had been offered the governor- 
ship of the Punjab, but on the ground of failing health had 
declined it. In February 1865 he was compelled to finally 
resign his post and return to England. A second good service 
pension was at once conferred on him; in May 1866 he was 
created K.C. of the Star of India; and early in 1868 was promoted 
major-general in the East Indian Army. He had been for some 
time engaged on a life of Sir Henry Lawrence, and high expecta- 
tions were formed of the work; but he did not live to complete 
it, and after his death it was put into the hands of Mr Herman 
Merivale. He died in London on the 23rd of December 1868. 
Great in council and great in war, he was singularly beloved by 
his friends, generous and unselfish to a high degree, and a man 
of deep religious convictions. 

See Memorials of the Life and Letters of Sir Herbert Benjamin 
Edwardes, by his wife (2 vols., London, 1886); T. R. E. Holmes,, 
Four Soldiers (London, 1889); J. Ruskin, Bill, pastorum, iv. "A 
Knight's Faith " (1885), passages from the life, of Edwardes. 

author and Egyptologist, the daughter of one of Wellington's 
officers, was born in London on the 7th of June 1831. At a very 
early age she displayed considerable literary and artistic talent. 
She became a contributor to various magazines and newspapers, 
and besides many miscellaneous works she wrote eight novels, 
the most successful of which were Debenham's Vow (1870) and 
Lord Brackenbury (1880). In the winter of 1873-1874 she visited 
Egypt, and was profoundly impressed by the new openings for 
archaeological research. She learnt the hieroglyphic characters, 
and made a considerable collection of Egyptian antiquities. In 
• 1877 she published A Thousand Miles up the Nile, with illustra- 
tions by herself. Convinced that only by proper scientific 
investigations could the wholesale destruction of Egyptian 
antiquities be avoided, she devoted herself to arousing public 
opinion on the subject, and ultimately, in 1882, was largely 
instrumental in founding the Egypt Exploration Fund, of which 
she became joint honorary secretary with Reginald Stuart Poole. 
For the business of this Fund she' abandoned her other literary 
work, writing only on Egyptology. In 1 889-1 890 she went on a 
lecturing tour in the United States. The substance of her 
lectures was published in volume form in 1891 as Pharaohs, 
Fellahs, and Explorers. She died at Weston-super-Mare, 
Somerset, on the 15th of April 1892, bequeathing her valuable 
collection of Egyptian antiquities to University College, London, 
together with a sum to found a chair of Egyptology. Miss 
Edwards received, shortly before her death, a civil list pension 
from the British government. 

EDWARDS, BELA BATES (1802-1852), American man of 
letters, was born at Southampton, Massachusetts, on the 4th of 
July 1802. He graduated at Amherst College in 1824, was a 
tutor there in 1827-1828, graduated at Andover Theological 
Seminary in 1.830, and was licensed to preach. From 1828 to 
1833 he was assistant secretary of the American Education 
Society (organized in Boston in 1815 to assist students for the 
ministry), and from 1828 to 1842 was editor of the society's 
organ, which after 1831 was called the American Quarterly 
Register. He also founded (in 1833) and edited the American 
Quarterly Observer; in 1836-1841 edited the Biblical Repository 
(after 1837 called the American Biblical Repository) with which 
the Observer was merged in 1835; and was editor-in-chief of the 
Bibliotheca Sacra from 1844 to 1851. In 1837 he became pro- 
fessor of Hebrew at Andover, and from 1848 until his death was 
associate professor of sacred literature there. He died at Athens. 

Georgia, on the 20th of April 1852. Among his numerous 
publications were A Missionary Gazetteer (1832), A Biography of 
Self-Taught Men (1832), a once widely known Eclectic Reader 
(1835), a translation, with Samuel Harvey Taylor (1807-1871), of 
Kuhner's Sdndgrammatik der Griechischen Sprache and Classical 
Studies (1844), essays in ancient literature and art written in 
collaboration with Barnas Sears and C. C. Felton. 

Edwards' Addresses and Sermons, with a memoir by Rev. 
Edwards A. Park, were published in two volumes at Boston in 1853. 

EDWARDS, BRYAN (1743-1800), English politician and 
historian, was born at Westbury, Wiltshire, on the 21st of May 
1743. His father died in 1756, when his maintenance and educa- 
tion were undertaken by his maternal uncle, Zachary Bayly, a 
wealthy merchant of Jamaica. About 1759 Bryan went to 
Jamaica, and joined his uncle, who engaged a private tutor to 
complete his education, and when Bayly died his nephew 
inherited his wealth, succeeding also in 1773 to the estate of 
anothen'Jamaica resident named ITume.^ Edwards-soon became 
a leading member of the. colonial assembly of Jamaica, .but in a 
few years he returned to England, and in 1782 failed to secure a 
seat in parliament as member for Chichester. He was again in 
Jamaica jrom.i 787 to 1792, when he settled in England as a West 
Indja merchant, making in 1795 another futile attempt to enter 
parliament, on this occasion as the representative of South- 
ampton. In 1796, however, he became member of parliament 
for Grampound, retaining his seat until his death at Southampton 
on the 15th or 16th of July 1800. In general Edwards was a 
supporter of the slave trade, and was described by William Wilber- 
force as a powerful opponent. By his wife, Martha, daughter 
of Thomas Phipps of Westbury, he left an only son, Hume. 

In 1784 Edwards wrote Thoughts on the late Proceedings of 
Government respecting the Trade of the West India Islands with the 
United States of America, in which he attacked the restrictions 
placed by the government upon trade with the United States. 
In 1793 he published in two volumes his great work, History, 
Civil and Commercial, of the British Colonies in the West Indies, 
and in 1797 published his Historical Survey of the French Colony 
in the Island of St Domingo. In 1801 a new edition of both these 
works with certain additions was published in three volumes 
under the title of History of the British Colonies in the West Indies. 
This has been translated into German and parts of it into French 
and Spanish, and a fifth edition was issued in 1819. When 
Mungo Park returned in 1796 from his celebrated journey in 
Africa, Edwards, who was secretary of the Association for 
Promoting the Discovery of the Interior Parts of Africa, drew up 
from Park's narrative an account of his travels, which was 
published by the association in their Proceedings; and when 
Park wrote an account of his journeys he availed himself of 
Edwards' assistance. Edwards also wrote some poems and 
some, other works relating to the history of the West Indies. 

He left a short sketch of his life which was prefixed to the edition 
of the History of the West Indies, published in 1 801. 

EDWARDS, GEORGE (1693-1773), English naturalist, was 
born at Stratford, Essex, on the 3rd of April 1693. In his early 
years he travelled extensively over Europe, studying natural 
history, and gained some reputation for his coloured drawings of 
animals, especially birds. In 1733, on the recommendation of 
Sir Hans Sloane, he was appointed librarian to the Royal College 
of Physicians in London. In 1 743 he published the first volume 
of his History of Birds, the fourth volume of which appeared in 
1751, and three supplementary volumes, under the title Glean- 
ings of Natural History, -were issued in ij $&, 1760 and 1764. The 
two works contain engravings and descriptions of more than 600 
subjects in natural history not before described or delineated. 
He likewise added a general index in French and English, which 
was afterwards supplied with Linnaean names by Linnaeus 
himself, with whom he frequently corresponded. About 1764 he 
retired to Plaistow, Essex, where he died on the 23 rd of July 
1773. He also wrote Essays of Natural History (1770) and 
Elements of Fossilogy (1776). 

EDWARDS, HENRY THOMAS (1837-1884), Welsh divine, 
was born on the 6th of September 1837 at Llan ym Mawddwy, 


Merioneth, where his father was vicar. He was educated at 
Westminster and at Jesus College, Oxford (B.A., i860), and after 
teaching for two years at Llandovery went to Llangollen as his 
father's curate. He became vicar of Aberdare in 1866 and of 
Carnarvon in 1869. Here he began his lifelong controversy with 
Nonconformity, especially as represented by the Rev. Evan Jones 
(Calvinistic Methodist) and Rev. E. Herber Evans (Congrega- 
tionalist). In 1870 he fought in vain for the principle of all- 
round denominationalism in the national education system, and 
in the same year addressed a famous letter to Mr Gladstone on 
" The Church of the Cymry," pointing out that the success of 
Nonconformity in Wales was largely due to " the withering effect 
of an alien episcopate." One immediate result of this was the 
appointment of the Welshman Joshua Hughes (1807-1889) to 
the vacant see of St Asaph. Edwards became dean of Bangor in 
1876 and at once set about restoring the cathedral, and he 
promoted a clerical education society for supplying the diocese 
with educated Welsh-speaking clergy. He was a popular preacher 
and an earnest patriot ; his chief defect was a lack of appreciation 
of the theological attainments of Nonconformity, and a Welsh 
commentary on St Matthew, which he had worked at for many 
years and published in two volumes in 1882, was severely 
handled by a Bangor Calvinistic Methodist minister. Edwards 
suffered from overwork and insomnia and a Mediterranean 
cruise in 1883 failed to restore his health; and he died by his own 
hand on the 24th of May 1884 at Ruabon. 

See V. Morgan, Welsh Religious Leaders in the Victorian Era. 

EDWARDS, JONATHAN (1703-1758), American theologian 
and philosopher, was born on the 5th of October 1703 at East 
(now South) Windsor, Connecticut. His earliest known ancestor 
was Richard Edwards, Welsh by birth, a London clergyman in 
Elizabeth's reign. His father Timothy Edwards (1 669-1 758), 
son of a prosperous merchant of Hartford, had graduated at' 
Harvard, was minister at East Windsor, and eked out his salary 
by tutoring boys for college. His mother, a daughter of the Rev. 
Solomon Stoddard, of Northampton, Mass., seems to have been 
a woman of unusual mental gifts and independence of character. 
Jonathan, the only son, was the fifth of eleven children. The boy 
was trained for college by his father and by his elder sisters, who 
all received an excellent education. When ten years old he wrote 
a semi-humorous tract on the immateriality of the soul; he was 
interested in natural history, and at the age of twelve wrote a 
remarkable essay on the habits of the " flying spider." He 
entered Yale College in 17 16, and in the following year became 
acquainted with Locke's Essay, which influenced him profoundly. 
During his college course he kept note books labelled " The Mind," 
" Natural Science " (containing a discussion of the atomic 
theory, &c), "The Scriptures " and " Miscellanies," had a grand 
plan for a work on natural and mental philosophy, and drew up 
for himself rules for its composition. Even before his graduation 
in September 1720 as valedictorian and head of his class, he 
seems to have had a well formulated philosophy. The two years 
after his graduation he spent in New Haven studying theology. 
In 1722-1723 he was for eight months stated supply of a small 
Presbyterian church in New York city, which invited him to 
remain, but he declined the call, spent two months in study at 
home, and then in 17 24-1 7 26 was one of the two tutors at Yale, 
earning for himself the name of a " pillar tutor " by his steadfast 
loyalty to the college and its orthodox teaching at the time when 
Yale's rector (Cutler) and one of her tutors had gone over to the 
Episcopal Church. 

The years 1720 to 1726 are partially recorded in his diary and 
in the resolutions for his own conduct which he drew up at this 
time. He had long been an eager seeker after salvation and was 
not fully satisfied as to his own " conversion " until an experience 
in his last year in college, when he lost his feeling that the 
election of some to salvation and of others to eternal damnation 
was " a horrible doctrine," and reckoned it " exceedingly 
pleasant, bright and sweet. " He now took a great and new joy 
in the beauties of nature, and deliehted in the aiiegorical in- 
terpretation of the Song of Solomon. Balancing these mystic 
joys is the stern tone of his Resolutions, in which he is almost 

ascetic in his eagerness to live earnestly and soberly, to waste no 
time, to maintain the strictest temperance in eating and drinking. 
On the 15th of February 1727 he was ordained minister at 
Northampton and assistant to his grandfather, Solomon 
Stoddard. He was a student minister, not a visiting pastor, his 
rule being thirteen hours of study a day. In the same year he 
married Sarah Pierrepont, then aged seventeen, daughter of 
James Pierrepont (1659-17 14), a founder of Yale, and through her 
mother great-granddaughter of Thomas Hooker. Of her piety 
and almost nun-like love of God and belief in His personal love for 
her, Edwards had known when she was only thirteen, and had 
written of it with spiritual enthusiasm; she was of a bright and 
cheerful disposition, a practical housekeeper, a model wife and 
the mother of his twelve children. Solomon Stoddard died on the 
nth of February 1729, leaving to his grandson the difficult task 
of the sole ministerial charge of one of the largest and wealthiest 
congregations in the colony, and one proud of its morality, its 
culture and its reputation. 

In 1731 Edwards preached at Boston the " Public Lecture " 
afterwards published under the title God Glorified in Man's 
Dependence. This was his first public attack on Arminianism. 
The leading thought was God's absolute sovereignty in the 
work of redemption: that while it behoved God to create 
man holy, it was of His " good pleasure " and " mere and 
arbitrary grace " that any man was now made holy, and that 
God might deny this grace without any disparagement to any 
of His perfections. In 1733 a revival of religion began in 
Northampton, and reached such intensity in the winter of 1734 
and the following spring as to threaten the business of the 
town. In six months nearly three hundred were admitted to the 
church. The revival gave Edwards an opportunity of studying 
the process of conversion in all its phases and varieties, and he 
recorded his observations with psychological minuteness and 
discrimination in A Faithful Narrative of the Surprising Work of 
God in the Conversion of Many Hundred Souls in Northampton 
(1737). A year later he published Discourses on Various Im- 
portant Subjects, the five sermons which had proved most effective 
in the revival, and of these none, he tells us, was so immediately 
effective as that on the Justice of God in the Damnation of Sinners, 
from the text, " That every mouth may be stopped." Another 
sermon, published in 1734, on the Reality of Spiritual Light set 
forth what he regarded as the inner, moving principle of the 
revival, the doctrine of a " special " grace in the immediate and 
supernatural divine illumination of the soul. In the spring of 
1735 the movement began to subside and a reaction set in. But 
the relapse was brief, and the Northampton revival, which had 
spread through the Connecticut valley and whose fame had 
reached England and Scotland, was followed in 1 739-1 740 by the 
Great Awakening, distinctively under the leadership of Edwards. 
The movement met with no sympathy from the orthodox leaders 
of the church. In 1741 Edwards published in its defence The 
Distinguishing Marks of a Work of the Spirit of God, dealing 
particularly with the phenomena most criticized, the swoonings, 
outcries and convulsions; These " bodily effects," he insisted, 
were not " distinguishing marks " of the work of thejSpirit of God ; 
but so bitter was the feeling against the revival in the more 
strictly Puritan churches that in 1742 he was forced to write a 
second apology, Thoughts on the Revival in New England, his main 
argument being the great moral improvement of the country. 
In the same pamphlet he defends an appeal to the emotions, and 
advocates preaching terror when necessary, even to children, 
who in God's sight " are young vipers ... if not Christ's." He 
considers " bodily effects " incidentals to the real work of God, 
but his own mystic devotion and the experiences of his wife 
during the Awakening (which he gives in detail) make him think 
that the divine visitation usually overpowers the body, a view in 
support of which he quotes Scripture. In reply to Edwards, 
Charles Chauncy anonymously wrote The Late Religious Com- 
motions in New England Considered (1743), urging conduct as the 
sole test of conversion; and the general convention of Congrega- 
tional ministers in the Province of Massachusetts Bay protested 
" against disorders in practice which have of late obtained in 


various parts of the land." In spite of Edwards's able pamphlet, 
the impression had become widespread that " bodily effects " 
were recognized by the promoters of the Great Awakening as the 
true tests of conversion To offset this feeling Edwards 1 preached 
at Northampton during the years 1742 and 1743 a series of 
sermons published under the title of Religious Affections (1 746), a 
restatement in a more philosophical and general tone of his ideas 
as to " distinguishing marks." In 1747 he joined the movement 
started in Scotland called the " concert in prayer," and in the 
same year published An Humble Attempt to Promote Explicit 
Agreement and Visible Union of God's People in Extraordinary 
Prayer for the Revival of Religion and the Advancement of Christ's 
Kingdom on Earth. In 1749 he published a memoir of David 
Brainerd; the latter had lived in his family for several months, 
had been constantly attended by Edwards's daughter Jerusha, to 
whom he had been engaged to be married, and had died at 
Northampton on the 7th of October 1747; and he had been a 
case in point for the theories of conversion held by Edwards, 
who had made elaborate notes of Brainerd's conversations and 

In 1 748 there hadcome a crisis in his relations with his congrega- 
tion. The Half -Way Covenant adopted by the synods of 1657 and 
1662 had made baptism alone the condition to the civil privileges 
of church membership, but not of participation in the sacrament 
of the Supper. Edwards's grandfather and predecessor, Solomon 
Stoddard, had been even more liberal, holding that the Supper 
was a converting ordinance and that baptism was a sufficient 
title to all the privileges of the church. As early as 1 744 Edwards, 
in his sermons on the Religious Affections, had plainly intimated 
his dislike of this practice. In the same year he had published in 
a church meeting the names of certain young people, members of 
the church, who were suspected of reading improper books, 2 and 
also the names of those who were to be called as witnesses in the 
case. But witnesses and accused were not distinguished on this list, 
and the congregation was in an uproar. A great many, fearing a 
scandal, now opposed an investigation which all had previously 
favoured . Edwards 's preaching became unpopular ; for four years 
no candidate presented himself for admission to the church ; and 
when one did in 1748, and was met with Edwards's formal but 
mild and gentle tests, as expressed in the Distinguishing Marks 
and later in Qualifications for Full Communion (1749) the 
candidate refused to submit to them; the church backed him 
and the break was complete. Even permission to discuss his 
views in the pulpit was refused him. The ecclesiastical council 
voted by 10 to 9 that the pastoral relation be dissolved. The 
church by a vote of more than 200 to 23 ratified the action of the 
council, and finally a town meeting voted that Edwards should 
not be allowed to occupy the Northampton pulpit, though he did 
this on occasion as late as May 1755. He evinced no rancour or 
spite; his " Farewell Sermon " was dignified and temperate; nor 
is it to be ascribed to chagrin that in a letter to Scotland after his 
dismissal he expresses his preference for Presbyterian to Con- 
gregational church government. His position at the time was 
not unpopular throughout New England, and it is needless to 
say that his doctrine that the Lord's Supper is not a cause of 
regeneration and that communicants should be professing 
Christians has since (very largely through the efforts of his pupil 
Joseph Bellamy) become a standard of New England Congre- 

Edwards with his large family was now thrown upon the 
world, but offers of aid quickly came to him. A parish in Scotland 
could have been procured, and he was called to a Virginia church. 
He declined both, to become in 1750 pastor of the church in 
Stockbridge and a missionary to the Housatonic Indians To 
the Indians he preached through an interpreter, and their interests 
he boldly and successfully defended by attacking the whites 

1 Edwards recognized the abuse of impulses and impressions, 
opposed itinerant and lay preachers, and defended a well-ordered 
and well-educated clergy. 

2 These were probably not fiction like Pamela, as Sir Leslie 
Stephen suggested, for Edwards listed several of Richardson's 
novels for his own reading, and considered Sir Charles Grandison 
a very moral and excellent work. 

who were using their official position among them to increase 
their private fortunes. In Stockbridge he wrote the Humble 
Relation, also called Reply to Williams (1752), which was an 
answer to Solomon Williams (1700-1776), a relative and a bitter 
opponent of Edwards as to the qualifications for full communion; 
and he there composed the treatises on which his reputation 
as a philosophical theologian chiefly rests, the essay on Original 
Sin, the Dissertation concerning the Nature of True Virtue, the 
Dissertation concerning the End for which God created the World, 
and the great work on the Will 4 written in four months and a 
half, and published in 1754 under the title, An Inquiry into the 
Modern Prevailing Notions Respecting that Freedom of the Will 
which is supposed to be Essential to Moral Agency. 

In 1757, on the death of President Burr, who five years before 
had married Edwards's daughter Esther, he reluctantly accepted 
the presidency of the College of New Jersey (now Princeton 
University), where he was installed on the 16th of February 
1758. Almost immediately afterwards he was inoculated for 
smallpox, which was raging in Princeton and vicinity, and, 
always feeble, he died of the inoculation on the 28th of March 
1758. He was buried in the old cemetery at Princeton. He 
was slender and fully six feet tall, and with his oval, gentle, 
almost feminine face looked the scholar and the mystic. 

The Edwardean System. — It is difficult to separate Edwards's 
philosophy from his theology, except as the former is contained in 
the early notes on the Mind, where he says that matter exists only 
in idea ; that space is God ; that minds only are real ; that in meta- 
physical strictness there is no being but God; that entity is the 
greatest and only good; and that God as infinite entity, wherein 
the agreement of being with being is absolute, is the supreme ex- 
cellency, the supreme good. It seems certain that these conclusions 
were independent of Berkeley and Malebranche, and were not drawn 
from Arthur Collier's Clavis universalis (1713), with which they have 
much in common, but were suggested, in part at least, by Locke's 
doctrine of ideas, Newton's theory of colours, and Cudworth's 
Platonism, with all of which Edwards was early familiar. But they 
were never developed systematically, and the conception of the 
material universe here contended for does not again explicitly re- 
appear in any of his writings. The fundamental metaphysical 
postulate that being and God are ultimately identical remained, 
however, the philosophical basis of all his thinking, and reverence 
for this being as the supreme good remained the fundamental dis- 
position of his mind. That he did not interpret this idea in a Spino- 
zistic sense was due to his more spiritual conception of " being " 
and to the reaction on his philosophy of his theology. The theo- 
logical interest, indeed, came in the end to predominate, and 
philosophy to appear as an instrument for the defence of Calvinism. 
Perhaps the best criticism of Edwards's philosophy as a whole is that, 
instead of being elaborated on purely rational principles, it is mixed 
up with a system of theological conceptions with which it is never 
thoroughly combined, and that it is exposed to all the disturbing 
effects of theological controversy. Moreover, of one of his most 
central convictions, that of the sovereignty of God in election, he 
confesses that he could give no account. 

Edwards's reputation as a thinker is chiefly associated with his 
treatise on the Will, which is still sometimes called " the one large 
contribution that America has made to the deeper philosophic 
thought of the world." The aim of this treatise was to refute the 
doctrine of free- will, since he considered it the logical, as distinguished 
from the sentimental, ground of most of the Arminian objections to 
Calvinism. He defines the will as that by which the " mind chooses 
anything." To act voluntarily, he says, is to act electively. So far 
he and his opponents are agreed. But choice, he holds, is not 
arbitrary; it is determined in every case by " that motive which as 
it stands in the view of the mind is the strongest," and that motive 
is strongest which presents in the immediate object of volition the 
" greatest apparent good," that is, the greatest degree of agreeable- 
ness or pleasure. What this is in a given case depends on a multitude 
of circumstances, external and internal, all contributing to form 
the " cause " of which the voluntary act and its consequences are 
the " effect." Edwards contends that the connexion between cause 
and effect here is as "sure and perfect " as in the realm of physical 
nature and constitutes a " moral necessity." He reduces the 
opposite doctrine to three assumptions, all of which he shows to be 
untenable: (1) " a self-determining power in the will "; (2) " in- 
difference , . . . that the mind previous to the act of volition (is) 
in equilibrio "; (3) " contingence ... as opposed to . . . any fixed 
and certain connexion (of the volition) with some previous ground 
or reason for its existence." Although he denies liberty to the will in 
this sense — indeed, strictly speaking, neither liberty nor necessity, 
he says, is properly applied to the will, " for the will itself is 
not an agent that has a will " — he nevertheless insists that the 
subject willing is a free moral agent, and argues that without the 


determinate connexion between volition and motive which he asserts 
and the libertarians deny, moral agency would be impossible. 
Liberty, he holds, is simply freedom from constraint, " the power 
. . . that any one has to do as he pleases." This power man pos- 
sesses. And that the right or wrong of choice depends not on the 
cause of choice but on its nature, he illustrates by the example of 
Christ, whose acts were necessarily holy, yet truly virtuous, praise- 
worthy and rewardable. Even God Himself, Edwards here main- 
tains, has no other liberty than this, to carry out without constraint 
His will, wisdom and inclination. 

There is no necessary connexion between Edwards's doctrine of 
the motivation of choice and the system of Calvinism with which it is 
congruent. Similar doctrines have more frequently perhaps been 
associated with theological scepticism. But for him the alternative 
was between Calvinism and Arminianism, simply because of the 
historical situation, and in the refutation of Arminianism on the 
assumptions common to both sides of the controversy, he must be 
considered completely successful. As a general argument his 
account of the determination of the will is defective, notably in his 
abstract conception of the will and in his inadequate, but suggestive, 
treatment of causation, in regard to which he anticipates in important 
respects the doctrine of Hume. Instead of making the motive to 
choice a factor within the concrete process of volition, he regards 
it as a cause antecedent to the exercise of a special mental faculty. 
Yet his conception of this faculty as functioning only in and through 
motive and character, inclination and desire, certainly carries us a 
long way beyond the abstraction in which his opponents stuck, that 
of a bare faculty without any assignable content. Modern psycho- 
logy has strengthened the contention for a fixed connexion between 
motive and act by reference to subconscious and unconscious pro- 
cesses of which Edwards, who thought that nothing could affect the 
mind which was unperceived, little dreamed ; at the same time, 
at least in some of its developments, especially in its freer use ol 
genetic and organic conceptions, it has rendered much in the older 
forms of statement obsolete, and has given a new meaning to the 
idea of self-determination, which, as applied to an abstract power, 
Edwards rightly rejected as absurd. 

Edwards's controversy with the Arminians was continued in the 
essay on Original Sin, which was in the press at the time of his 
death. He here breaks with Augustine and the Westminster Con- 
fession by arguing, consistently with his theory of the Will, that 
Adam had no more freedom of will than we have, but had a special 
endowment, a supernatural gift of grace, which by rebellion against 
God was lost, and that this gift was withdrawn from his descendants, 
not because of any fictitious imputation of guilt, but because of their 
real participation in his guilt by actual identity with him in his 

The Dissertation on the Nature of True Virtue, posthumously 
published, is justly regarded as one of the most original works on 
ethics of the 18th century, and is the more remarkable as reproducing, 
with no essential modification, ideas on the subject written in the 
author's youth in the notes on the Mind. Virtue is conceived as the 
beauty of moral qualities. Now beauty, in Edwards's view, always 
consists in a harmonious relation in the elements involved, an agree- 
ment of being with being. He conceives, therefore, of virtue, or 
moral beauty, as consisting in the cordial agreement or consent to 
intelligent being. He defines it as benevolence (good-will), or rather 
as a disposition to benevolence, towards being in general. _ This 
disposition, he argues, has no regard primarily to beauty in the 
object, nor is it primarily based on gratitude. Its first object is being, 
" simply considered," and it is accordingly proportioned, other 
things being equal, to the object's " degree of existence." He 
admits, however, benevolent being as a second objection the ground 
that such an object, having a like virtuous propensity, " is, as it 
were, enlarged, extends to, and in some sort comprehends being in 
general." ' In brief, since God is the " being of beings " and com- 
prehends, in the fullest extent, benevolent consent to being in 
general, true virtue consists essentially in a supreme love to God. 
Thus the principle of virtue — Edwards has nothing to say of 
" morality " — is identical with the principle of religion. From this 
standpoint Edwards combats every lower view. He will not admit 
that there is any evidence of true virtue in the approbation of virtue 
and hatred of vice, in the workings of conscience or in the exercises 
of the natural affections ; he thinks that these may all spring from 
self-love and the association of ideas, from " instinct " or from a 
" moral sense of a secondary kind " entirely different from " a sense 
or relish of the essential beauty of true virtue." Nor does he recog- 
nize the possibility of a natural development of true virtue out of 
the sentiments directed on the " private systems " ; on the contrary, 
he sets the love of particular being, when not subordinated to being 
in general, in opposition to the latter and as equivalent to treating 
it with the greatest contempt. All that he allows is that the percep- 
tion of natural beauty may, by its resemblance to the primary 
spiritual beauty, quicken the disposition to divine love in those 
who are already under the influence of a truly virtuous temper. 

Closely connected with the essay on Virtue is the boldly specu- 
lative Dissertation on the End for which God Created the World. As, 
according to the doctrine of virtue, God's virtue consists primarily 
in love to Himself, so His final end in creation is conceived to be, 
not as the Arminians held, the happiness of His creatures, but His 

own glory. Edwards supposes in the nature of God an original 
disposition to an " emanation " of His being, and it is the excellency 
of this divine being, particularly in the elect, which is, in his view, 
the final cause and motive of the world. 

Edwards makes no attempt to reconcile the pantheistic element 
in his philosophy with the individuality implied in moral 
government. He seems to waver between the opinion that finite 
individuals have no independent being and the opinion that they 
have it in an infinitesimal degree; and the conception of " degrees 
of existence " in the essay on Virtue is not developed to elucidate 
the point. His theological conception of God, at any rate, was not 
abstractly pantheistic, in spite of the abstractness of his language 
about " being," but frankly theistic and trinitarian. He held the 
doctrine of the trinitarian distinctions indeed to be a necessity of 
reason. His Essay on the Trinity, first printed in 1903, was long 
supposed to have been withheld from publication because of its 
containing Arian or Sabellian tendencies. It contains in fact nothing 
more questionable than an attempted deduction of the orthodox 
Nicene doctrine, unpalatable, however, to Edwards's immediate 
disciples, who were too little speculative to appreciate his statement 
of the subordination of the " persons " in the divine " oeconomy," 
and who openly derided the doctrine of the eternal generation of the 
Son as "eternal nonsense"; and this perhaps was the original 
reason why the essay was not published. 

Though so typically a scholar and abstract thinker on the one 
hand and on the other a mystic, Edwards is best known to the 
present generation as a preacher of hell fire. The particular reason 
for this seems to lie in a single sermon preached at Enfield, Con- 
necticut, in July 1741 from the text, " Their foot shall slide in due 
time," and commonly known from its title, Sinners in the Hands of 
an Angry God. The occasion of this sermon is usually overlooked. 
It was preached to a congregation who were careless and loose in 
their lives at a time when " the neighbouring towns were in great 
distress for their souls." A contemporary account of it says that 
in spite of Edwards's academic style of preaching, the assembly was 
" deeply impressed and bowed down, with an awful conviction of 
their sin and danger. There was such a breathing of distress and 
weeping, that the preacher was obliged to speak to the people and 
desire silence, that he might be heard." Edwards preached other 
sermons of this type, but this one was the most extreme. The 
style of the imprecatory sermon, however, was no more peculiar 
to him than to his period. He was not a great preacher in the 
ordinary meaning of the word. His gestures were scanty, his voice 
was not powerful, but he was desperately in earnest, and he held 
his audience whether his sermon contained a picturesque and de- 
tailed description of the torments of the damned, or, as was often 
the case, spoke of the love and peace of God in the heart cf man. 
He was an earnest, devout Christian, and a man of blameless life. 
His insight into the spiritual life was profound. Certainly the most 
able metaphysician and the most influential religious thinker of 
America, he must rank in theology, dialectics, mysticism and philo- 
sophy with Calvin and Fenelon, Augustine and Aquinas, Spinoza 
and Novalis; with Berkeley and Hume as the great English philo- 
sophers of the 1 8th century; and with Hamilton and Franklin as 
the three American thinkers of the same century of more than 
provincial importance. 

Edwards's main aim had been to revivify Calvinism, modifying 
it for the needs of the time, and to promote a warm and vital Christian 
piety. The tendency of his successors was — to state the matter 
roughly — to take some one of his theories and develop it to an 
extreme. Of hip immediate followers Joseph Bellamy is distinctly 
Edwardean in the keen logic and in the spirit of his True Religion 
Delineated, but he breaks with his master in his theory of general 
(not limited) atonement. Samuel Hopkins laid even greater stress 
than Edwards on the theorem that virtue consists in disinterested 
benevolence; .but he went counter to Edwards in holding that un- 
conditional resignation to God's decrees, or more concretely, willing- 
ness to be damned for the glory of God, was the test of true regenera- 
tion; for Edwards, though often quoted as holding this doctrine, 
protested against it in the strongest terms. Hopkins, moreover, 
denied Edwards's identity theory of original sin, saying that our 
sin was a result of Adam's and not identical with it ; and he went 
much further than Edwards in his objection to " means of grace," 
claiming that the unregenerate were more and more guilty for 
continual rejection of the gospel if they were outwardly righteous 
and availed themselves of the means of grace. Stephen West (1735- 
18 19), too, out-Edwardsed Edwards in his defence of the treatise on 
the Freedom of the Will, and John Smalley (1734-1820) developed 
the idea of a natural (not moral) inability on the part of man to obey 
God. Emmons, like Hopkins, considered both sin and holiness 
" exercises " of the will. Timothy Dwight (1752-1847) urged the 
use of the means of grace, thought Hopkins and Emmons pan- 
theistic, and boldly disagreed with their theory of " exercises," reckon- 
ing virtue and sin as the result of moral choice or disposition, a 
position that was also upheld by Asa Burton (1752-1836), who 
thought that on regeneration the disposition of man got a new relish 
or " taste." 

Jonathan Edwards 1 the younger (1745-1801), second son of 

1 Besides the younger Jonathan many of Edwards's descendants 


the philosopher, born at Northampton, Massachusetts, on the 26th 
of May 1745, also takes an important place among his followers. 
He lived in Stockbridge in 1 751-1755 and spoke the language of the 
Housatonic Indians with ease, for six months studied among the 
Oneidas, graduated at Princeton in 1765, studied theology at 
_Bethlehem,Connecticut, under Joseph Bellamy.was licensed to preach 
in 1766, was a tutor at Princeton in 1766-1769, and was pastor 
of the White Haven Church, New Haven, Connecticut, in 1769-1795, 
being then dismissed for the nominal reason that the church could 
not support him, but actually because of his opposition to the 
Half-Way Covenant as well as to slavery and the slave trade. He 
preached at Colebrook, Connecticut, in 1796-1799 and then became 
president of Union College, Schenectady, New York, where he died 
on the 1st of August 1801. His studies of the Indian dialects were 
scholarly and valuable. He edited his father's incomplete History 
of the Work of Redemption, wrote in answer to Stephen West, A 
Dissertation Concerning Liberty and Necessity (1797), which defended 
his father's work on the Will by a rather strained interpretation, 
and in answer to Chauncy on universal salvation formulated what 
i« known as the " Edwardean," New England or Governmental 
theory of the atonement in The Necessity of the Atonement and its 
Consistency with Free Grace in Forgiveness (1785). His collected 
works were edited by his grandson Tryon Edwards in two volumes, 
with memoir (Andover, 1842). His place in the Edwardean theo- 
logy _ is principally due to his defence against the Universalists 
of his father's doctrine of the atonement, namely, that Christ's 
death, being the equivalent of the eternal punishment of sinners, 
upheld the authority of the divine law, but did net pay any debt, 
and made the pardon of all men a possibility with God, but not a 

Bibliography. — There have been various editions of Edwards's 
works. His pupil, Samuel Hopkins, in 1765 published two volumes 
from manuscript containing eighteen sermons and a memoir; the 
younger Jonathan Edwards with Dr Erskine published an edition 
in 4 volumes (1744 sqq.), and Samuel Austin in 1808 edited an 
edition in 8 volumes. In 1829 Sereno E. Dwight, a great-grandson 
of Edwards, published the Life and Works in 10 volumes, the first 
volume containing the memoir, which is still the most complete and 
was the standard until the publication (Boston, 1889) of Jonathan 
Edwards, by A. V. G. Allen, who attempts to "distinguish what he 
(Edwards) meant to affirm from what he actually teaches." In 
1865 the Rev. Alexander B. Grosart edited from original manu- 
scripts Selections from the Unpublished Writings of Jonathan Edwards 
of America (Edinburgh, 1865, printed for private circulation). This 
was the only part of a complete edition planned by Grosart that ever 
appeared. It contained the important Treatise on Grace, Anno- 
tations on the Bible, Directions for Judging of Persons' Experiences, 
and Sermons, the last for the most part merely in outline. E, C. 
Smyth published from a copy Observations Concerning the Scripture 
Oeconomy of the Trinity and Covenant of Redemption (New York, 
1880), a careful edition from the manuscript of the essay on the 
Flying Spider (in the Andover Review, January 1890) and " Some 
Early Writings of Jonathan Edwards," with specimens from the 
manuscripts (in Proceedings of the American Antiquarian Society, 
October, 1895). In 1900 on the death of Prof. Edwards A. Park, 
the entire collection of Edwards's manuscripts loaned to him by 
Tryon Edwards was transferred to Yale University. Professor 
Park, like Mr. Grosart before him, had been unable to accomplish 
the great task of editing this mass of manuscript. " A Study of the 
Manuscripts of Jonathan Edwards " was published by F. B. Dexter 
in the Proceedings of the Massachusetts Historical Society, series 2, 
vol. xv. (Boston, 1902), and in the same volume of the Proceedings 
appeared " A Study of the Shorthand Writings of Jonathan 
Edwards," by W. P. Upham. The long sought for essay on the 
Trinity was edited (New York, 1903) with valuable introduction and 
appendices by G. P. Fisher under the title, An Unpublished Essay 
of Edwards's on the Trinity. The only other edition of Edwards 
(in whole or in part) of any importance is Selected Sermons of Jonathan 
Edwards (New York, 1904), edited by H. N. Gardiner, with brief 
biographical sketch and annotations on seven sermons, one of which 
had not previously been published. 

For estimates of Edwards consult: The Volume of the Edwards 
Family Meeting at Stockbridge, Massachusetts, September 6-f, A.D. 
1870 (Boston, 1871); Jonathan Edwards, a Retrospect, Being the 
Addresses Delivered in Connecticut with the Unveiling of a Memorial 

were great, brilliant or versatile men. Among them were: his 
son Pierrepont (1750-1826), a brilliant but erratic member of the 
Connecticut bar, tolerant in religious matters and bitterly hated by 
stern Calvinists, a man whose personal morality resembled greatly 
that of Aaron Burr; his grandsons. William Edwards (1770-1851), 
an inventor of important leather rolling machinery ; Aaron Burr the 
son of Esther Edwards; Timothy Dwight (1752-1817), son of Mary 
Edwards, and his brother Theodore Dwight, a Federalist politician, 
a member, the secretary and the historian of the Hartford Con- 
vention; his great-grandsons, Tryon Edwards (1809-1894) and 
Sereno_ Edwards Dwight, theologian, educationalist and author; 
and his great-great-grandsons, Theodore William Dwight, the 
jurist, and Timothy Dwight, second of that name to be president 
of Yale. 

in the First Church of Christ in Northampton, Massachusetts, on the 
One Hundred and Fiftieth Anniversary of his Dismissal from the 
Pastorate of that Church, edited by H. N. Gardiner (Boston, 1901); 
Exercises Commemorating the Two Hundredth Anniversary of the 
Birth of Jonathan Edwards, held at Andover Theological Seminary. 
October 4-5, IQ03 (Andover, 1904) ; and among the addresses de- 
livered at Stockbridge in October 1903, John De Witt, " Jonathan 
Edwards: A Study," in the Princeton Theological Review (January, 
1904). ^ Also H. C. King, " Edwards as Philosopher and Theo- 
logian," in Hartford Theological Seminary Record, vol. xiv (1903) 
PP- 23-57; . H. N. Gardiner, " The Early Idealism of Jonathan 
Edwards, in the Philosophical Review, vol. ix. (1900), pp. 573-596; 
E. C. Smyth, American Journal of Theology, vol. i. (1897), pp 960-964 ' 
Samuel^ P. Hayes, " An Historical Study of the Edwardean Re- 
vivals, in American Journal of Psychology, vol. xiii. (1902), pp. 550 
ff.; J. H. MacCracken, "Philosophical Idealism of Edwards" in 
Philosophical Review, vol. xi. (1902), pp. 26-42, suggesting that 
Edwards did not know Berkeley, but Collier, and the same author's 
Jonathan Edwards' Idealismus (Halle, 1899) ; F. J. E. Woodbridge, 
" Jonathan Edwards," in Philosophical Review, vol. xiii. (1904) 
PP- 393-4 08 ; W. H. Squires, Jonathan Edwards und seine Willens- 
lehre (Leipzig, 1901); Samuel Simpson, "Jonathan Edwards, A 
Historical Review," in Hartford Seminary Record, vol. xiv. (1903), 
pp. 3-22 ; and The Edwardean, a Quarterly Devoted to the History of 
Thought in America (Clinton, New York, 1903-1904), edited by 
W. H. Squires, of which only four parts appeared, all devoted to 
Edwards and all written by Squires. (H. N. G. ; R. We.) 

EDWARDS, LEWIS (1809-1887), Welsh Nonconformist 
divine, was born in the parish of Llanbadarn Fawr, Cardigan- 
shire, on the 27th of October 1809. He was educated at 
Aberystwyth and at Llangeitho, and then himself kept school 
in both these places. He had already begun to preach for the 
Calvinistic Methodists when, in December 1830, he went to 
London to take advantage of the newly-opened university. 
In 1832 he settled as minister at Laugharne in Carmarthenshire, 
and the following year went to Edinburgh, where a special 
resolution of the senate allowed him to graduate at the end of 
his third session. He was now better able to further his plans 
for providing a trained ministry for his church. . Previously, 
the success of the Methodist preachers had been due mainly to 
their natural gifts. Edwards made his home at Bala, and there, 
in 1837, with David Charles, his brother-in-law, he opened a 
school, which ultimately became the denominational college 
for north Wales. He died on the 19th of July 1887. 

Edwards may fairly be called one of the makers of modern 
Wales. Through his hands there passed generation after genera- 
tion of preachers, who carried his influence to every corner of 
the principality. By fostering competitive meetings and by 
his writings, especially in Y Traethodydd ("The Essajist "), 
a quarterly magazine which he founded in 1845 and edited for 
ten years, he did much to inform and educate his countrymen 
on literary and theological subjects. A new college was built 
at Bala in 1867, for which he raised £10,000. His chief publica- 
tion was a noteworthy book on The Doctrine of the Atonement, cast 
in the form of a dialogue between master and pupil; the treat- 
ment is forensic, and emphasis is laid on merit. , It was due to him 
that the North and South Wales Calvinistic Methodist Associa- 
tions united to form an annual General Assembly; he was its 
moderator in 1866 and again in 1876. He was successful in 
bringing the various churches of the Presbyterian order into 
closer touch with each other, and unwearying in his efforts to 
promote education for his countrymen. 

See Bywyd a Llythyrau y Parch, {i.e. Life and Letters of the Rev ) 
Lewis Edwards, D.D., by his son T. C. Edwards. 

EDWARDS, RICHARD (c. 15 23-1 566), English musician and 
playwright, was born in Somersetshire, became a scholar of 
Corpus Christi College, Oxford, in 1540, and took his M. A. degree 
in 1547. He was appointed in 1561 a gentleman of the chapel 
royal and master of the children, and entered Lincoln's Inn in 
1564, where at Christmas in that year he produced a play which 
was acted by his choir boys. On the 3rd of September 1566 
his play, Palamon and Arcite, was performed before Queen 
Elizabeth in the Hall of Christ Church, Oxford. Another 
play, Damon and Pithias, tragic in subject but with scenes of 
vulgar farce, entered at Stationers' Hall in 1567-8, appeared 
in 1571 and was reprinted in 1582; it may be found in Dodsley's 


Old Plays, vol. i., and Ancient British Drama, vol. i. It is written 
in rhymed lines of rude construction, varying in length and 
neglecting the caesura. A number of the author's shorter pieces 
are preserved in the Paradise of Dainty Devices, first published 
in 1 575, and reprinted in the British Bibliographer, vol. iii.; 
the best known are the lines on May, the A mantium Irae, and 
the Commendation of Music, which has the honour of furnishing 
a stanza to Romeo and Juliet. The Historie of Damocles and 
Dionise is assigned to him in the 1578 edition of the Paradise. 
Sir John Hawkins credited him with the part song " In going to 
my lonely bed"; the words are certainly his, and probably 
the music. In his own day Edwards was highly esteemed. The 
fine poem, " The Soul's Knell," is supposed to have been written 
by him when dying. 

See Grove's Diet, of Music (new edition); the Shakespeare Soc. 
Papers, vol. ii. art. vi. ; Ward, English Dram. Literature, vol. i. 

EDWARDS, THOMAS CHARLES (1837-1900), Welsh Non- 
conformist divine and educationist, was born at Bala, Merioneth, 
on the 22nd of September 1837, the son of Lewis Edwards (q.v.). 
His resolve to become a minister was deepened by the revival of 
1858-1859. After taking his degrees at London (B.A. 1861, M.A. 
1862), he matriculated at St Alban Hall, Oxford, in October 
1862, the university having just been opened to dissenters. He 
obtained a scholarship at Lincoln College in 1864, and took a 
first class in the school of Literae Humaniores in 1866. He was 
especially influenced byMarkPattison and Jowett,who counselled 
him to be true to the church of his father, in which he had already 
been ordained. Early in 1867 he became minister at Windsor 
Street, Liverpool, but left it to become first principal of the 
University College of Wales at Aberystwyth, which had been 
established through the efforts of Sir Hugh Owen and other 
enthusiasts. The college was opened with a staff of three pro- 
fessors and twenty-five students in October 1872, and for some 
years its career was chequered enough. Edwards, however, 
proved a skilful pilot, and his hold on the affection of the Welsh 
people enabled him to raise the college to a high level of efficiency. 
When it was destroyed by fire in 1885 he collected £25,000 to 
rebuild it ; the remainder of the necessary £40,000 being given by 
the government (£10,000) and by the people of Aberystwyth 
(£5000). In 1 89 1 he gave up what had been the main work of 
his life to accept an undertaking that was even nearer his heart, 
the principalship of the theological college at Bala. A stroke of 
paralysis in 1894 fatally weakened him, but he continued at 
work till his death on the 22nd of March 1900. The Calvinistic 
Methodist Church of Wales bestowed on him every honour in their 
possession, and he received the degree of D.D. from the universities 
of Edinburgh (1887) and Wales (1898). His chief works were a 
Commentary on 1 Corinthians (1885), the Epistle to the Hebrews 
(" Expositor's Bible " series, 1888), and The God-Man (" Davies 
Lecture," 1895). 

EDWARDSVILLE, a city and the county-seat of Madison 
county; Illinois, U.S.A., in the south-western part of the state, on 
Cahokia Creek, about 18 m. N.E. of St Louis. Pop. (1890) 3561 ; 
(igoo) 4157 (573 forei.en-born) ; (1910) 5014. Edwardsville is 
served by the Toledo, St Louis & Western, the Wabash, the 
Litchfield & Madison, and the Illinois Terminal railways, and is 
connected with St Louis by three electric lines. It has a Carnegie 
library. The city's principal manufactures are carriages, ploughs, 
brick, machinery, sanitary ware and plumber's goods. Bitu- 
minous coal is extensively mined in the vicinity. Adjoining 
Edwardsville is the co-operative village Leclaire (unincorporated), 
with the factory of the N.O.Nelson Manufacturing Co., makers of 
plumber's supplies, brass goods, sanitary fixtures, &c; the 
village was founded in 1890 by Nelson O. Nelson (b. 1844), and 
nearly all of the residents are employed by the company of which 
he is the head; they share to a certain extent in its profits, and are 
encouraged to own their own homes. The company supports a 
school, Leclaire Academy, and has built a club-house, bowling 
alleys, tennis-courts, base-ball grounds, &c. The first settlement 
on the site of Edwardsville was made in 1812, and in 1815 the 
town was laid out and named in honour of Ninian Edwards 
(1775-1833), the governor of the Illinois Territory (1809-1818), 


and later United States senator (1818-1824) and governor of 
the state of Illinois (1826-1830). Edwardsville was incorporated 
in 1819 and received its present charter in 1872. 

EDWARDSVILLE, a borough of Luzerne county, Pennsyl- 
vania, U.S.A., on the north branch of the Susquehanna river, 
adjoining Kingston and close to the north-western limits of 
Wilkes-Barre (on the opposite side of the river), in the north- 
eastern part of the state; the official name of the post 
Edwardsdale. Pop. (1890), 3284; (1900), 5165, of whom 2645 
were foreign-born; (1910 census), 8407. It is served by the electric 
line of the Wilkes-Barre & Wyoming Valley Traction Co. Coal 
mining and brewing are the chief industries. Edwardsville was 
incorporated in 1884. 

EDWIN, Aeduini or Edwine (585-633), king of Northumbria, 
was the son of Ella of Deira. On the seizure of Deira by .(Ethel- 
frith of Bernicia (probably 605), Edwin was expelled and is said 
to have taken refuge with Cadfan, king of Gwynedd. After the 
battle of Chester, in which ^Etheifrith defeated the Welsh, 
Edwin fled to Rcedwald, the powerful king of East Anglia, who 
after some wavering espoused his cause and defeated and slew 
/Ethelfrith at the river Idle in 617. Edwin thereupon succeeded 
to the Northumbrian throne, driving out the sons of ^Ethelfrith. 
There is little evidence of external activity on the part of Edwin 
before 6 2 5 . It is probable that the conquest of the Celtic kingdom 
of Elmet, a district in the neighbourhood of the modern Leeds, 
ruled over by a king named Cerdic (Ceredig) is to be referred to 
this period, and this may have led to the later quarrel with 
Cadwallon, king of Gwynedd. Edwin seems also to have annexed 
Lindsey to his kingdom by 625. In this year he entered upon 
negotiations with Eadbald of Kent for a marriage with his sister 
yEthelberg. It was made a condition that Christianity should be 
tolerated in Northumbria, and accordingly Paulinus was con- 
secrated bishop by Justus in 625, and was sent to Northumbria 
with iEthelberg. According to Bede, Edwin was favourably 
disposed towards Christianity owing to a vision he had seen at the 
court of Rcedwald, and in 626 he allowed Eanfled, his daughter 
by jEthelberg, to be baptized. On the day of the birth of his 
daughter, the king's life had been attempted by Eomer, an 
emissary of C wichelm, king of Wessex. Preserved by the devotion 
of his thegn Lilla, Edwin vowed to become a Christian if victorious 
over his treacherous enemy. He was successful in the ensuing 
campaign, and abstained from the worship of the gods of his race. 
A letter of Pope Boniface helped to decide him, and after con- 
sulting his friends and counsellors, of whom the priest Coifi 
afterwards took a prominent part in destroying the temple at 
Goodmanham, he was baptized with his people and nobles at 
York, at Easter 627. In this town he granted Paulinus a see, 
built a wooden church and began one of stone. Besides York, 
Yeavering and Maelmin in Bernicia, and Catterick in Deira, were 
the chief scenes of the work of Paulinus. It was the influence of 
Edwin which led to the conversion of Eorpwald of East Anglia. 
Bede notices the peaceful state of Britain at this time, and relates 
that Edwin was preceded on his progresses by a kind of standard 
like that borne before the Roman emperors. In 633 Cadwallon of 
North Wales and Penda of Mercia rose against Edwin and slew 
him at Hatfield near Doncaster. His kinsman Osric succeeded in 
Deira, and Eanfrith the son of jEthelfrith in Bernicia. Bede tells 
us that Edwin had subdued the islands of Anglesey and Man, and 
the Annates Cambriae record that he besieged Cadwallon (perhaps 
in 63 2) in the island of Glannauc (Puffin Island) . He was definitely 
recognized as overlord by all the other Anglo-Saxon kings of his 
day except Eadbald of Kent. 

See Bede, Hist. Eccl. (ed. Plummer, Oxford, 1896), ii. 5, 9, 11, 12, 
13, 15, 16, 18, 20; Nennius (ed. San Marte, 1844), § 63; Vita S. 
Oswaldi, ix. Simeon of Durham (ed. Arnold, London, 1882-1885, 
vol. i. R.S.). (F. G. M. B.) 

EDWIN, JOHN (1 749-1 790), English actor, was born in London 
on the 10th of August 1749, the son of a watchmaker. As a 
youth, he appeared in the provinces, in minor parts; and at 
Bath in 1768 he formed a connexion with a Mrs Walmsley, a 
milliner, who bore him a son, but whom he afterwards deserted. 
His first London appearance was at the Haymarket in 1776 as 


Flaw in Samuel Foote's The Cozeners, but when George Colman 
took over the theatre he was given better parts and became its 
leading actor. In 1779 he was at Covent Garden, and played 
there or at the Haymarket until his death on the 31st of October 
1790. Ascribed to him are The Last Legacy of John Edwin, 1780; 
Edwin's Jests and Edwin's Pills to Purge Melancholy. 

His son, John Edwin (1768-1805), made a first appearance 
on the stage at the Haymarket as Hengo in Beaumont and 
Fletcher's Bonduca in 1778, and from that time acted frequently 
with his father, and managed the private theatricals organized 
by his intimate friend Lord Barrymore at Wargrave, Berks. 
In 1791 he married Elizabeth Rebecca Richards, an actress 
already well known in juvenile parts, and played at the Hay- 
market and elsewhere thereafter with her. He died in Dublin 
on the 22nd of February 1805. His widow joined the Drury 
Lane company (then playing, on account of the fire of 1809, at 
the Lyceum), and took all the leading characters in the comedies 
of the day. She died on the 3rd of August 1854. 

EDWY (Eadwig), "The Fair" (c. 940-959), king of the 
English, was the eldest son of King Edmund and /Elfgifu, and 
succeeded his uncle Eadred in 955, when he was little more than 
fifteen years old. He was crowned at Kingston by Archbishop 
Odo, and his troubles began at the coronation feast. He had 
retired to enjoy the company of the ladies jEthelgifu (perhaps 
his foster-mother) and her daughter ^Elfgifu, whom the king 
intended to marry. The nobles resented the king's withdrawal, 
and he was induced by Dunstan and Cynesige, bishop of Lichfield, 
to return to the feast. Edwy naturally resented this inter- 
ference, and in 957 Dunstan was driven into exile. By the year 
956 /Elfgifu had become the king's wife, but in 958 Archbishop 
Odo of Canterbury secured their separation on the ground of 
their being too closely akin. Edwy, to judge from the dis- 
proportionately large numbers of charters issued during his 
reign, seems to have been weakly lavish in the granting of 
privileges, and soon the chief men of Mercia and Northumbria 
were disgusted by his partiality for Wessex. The result was 
that in the year 957 his brother, the jEtheling Edgar, was chosen 
as king by the Mercians and Northumbrians. It is probable 
that no actual conflict took place, and in 959, on Edwy's death, 
Edgar acceded peaceably to the combined kingdoms of Wessex, 
Mercia and Northumbria. 

Authorities. — Saxon Chronicle (ed. Earle and Plummer, Oxford), 
sub ann. ; Memorials of St Dunstan (ed. Stubbs, Rolls Series) ; 
William of Malmesbury, Gesta regum (ed.- Stubbs, Rolls Series) ; 
Birch, Cartularium Saxonicum, vol. ii. Nos. 932-1046; Florence of 

EECKHOUT, GERBRAND VAN DEN (1621-1674), Dutch 
painter, born at Amsterdam on the 19th of August 1621, entered 
early into the studio of Rembrandt. Though a companion 
pupil to F. Bol and Govaert Flinck, he was inferior to both in 
skill and in the extent of his practice; yet at an early period 
he assumed Rembrandt's manner with such success that his 
pictures were confounded with those of his master; and, even 
in modern days, the " Resurrection of the Daughter of Jairus," 
in the Berlin museum, and the " Presentation in the Temple," 
in the Dresden gallery, have been held to represent worthily 
the style of Rembrandt. As evidence of the fidelity of Eeckhout's 
imitation we may cite his " Presentation in the Temple," at 
Berlin, which is executed after Rembrandt's print of 1630, and 
his " Tobit with the Angel," at Brunswick, which is composed 
on the same background as Rembrandt's " Philosopher in 
Thought." Eeckhout not merely copies the subjects; he also 
takes the shapes, the figures, the Jewish dress and the pictorial 
effects of his master. It is difficult to form an exact judgment 
of Eeckhout's qualities at the outset of his career. His earliest 
pieces are probably those in which he more faithfully reproduced 
Rembrandt's peculiarities. Exclusively his is a tinge of green 
in shadows marring the harmony of the work, a certain gaudiness 
of jarring tints, uniform surface and a touch more quick than 
subtle. Besides the pictures already mentioned we should class 
amongst early productions on this account the "Woman taken 
in Adultery," at Amsterdam; " Anna presenting her Son to the 

High Priest," in the Louvre; the " Epiphany," at Turin; and 
the " Circumcision," at Cassel. Eeckhout matriculated early 
in the Gild of Amsterdam. A likeness of a lady at a dressing- 
table with a string of beads, at Vienna, bears the date of 1643, 
and proves that the master at this time possessed more imitative 
skill than genuine mastery over nature. As he grew older he 
succeeded best in portraits, a very fair example of which is that 
of the historian Dappers (1669), in the Stadel collection. Eeck- 
hout occasionally varied his style so as to recall in later years th< 
" small masters " of the Dutch school. Waagen justly draws 
attention to his following of Terburg in " Gambling Soldiers,' 1 
at Stafford House, and a " Soldiers' Merrymaking," in the collec . 
tion of the marquess of Bute. A " Sportsman with Hounds," 
probably executed in 1670, now in the Vander Hoo gallery, and 
a " Group of Children with Goats " (1671), in the Hermitage, 
hardly exhibit a trace of the artist's first education. Amongst 
the best of Eeckhout's works " Christ in the Temple " (1662), 
at Munich, and the " Haman and Mordecai " of 1665, at Luton 
House, occupy a good place. Eeckhout died at Amsterdam on 
the 22nd of October 1674. 

EEL. The common freshwater eel (Lat. anguilla; O. Eng. 
od) belongs to a group of soft-rayed fishes distinguished by the 
presence of an opening to the air-bladder and the absence of 
the pelvic fins. With its nearest relatives it forms the family 
Muraenidae, all of which are of elongated cylindrical form. 
The peculiarities of the eel are the rudimentary scales buried 
in the skin, the well-developed pectoral fins, the rounded tail fin 
continuous with the dorsal and ventral fins. Only one other 
species of the family occurs in British waters, namely, the conger, 
which is usually much larger and lives in the sea. In the conger 
the eyes are larger than in the eel, and the upper jaw overlaps 
the lower, whereas in the eel the lower jaw projects beyond the 
upper. Both species are voracious and predatory, and feed 
on almost any animal food they can obtain, living or dead. 
The conger is especially fond of squid or other Cephalopods, 
while the eel greedily devours carrion. The common eel occurs 
in all the rivers and fresh waters of Europe, except those draining 
towards the Arctic Ocean, the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea. 
It also occurs on the Atlantic side of North America. The 
conger has a wider range, extending from the western and 
southern shores of Britain and Ireland to the East Indian Archi- 
pelago and Japan. It is common in the Mediterranean. 

The ovaries of the eel resemble somewhat those of the salmon in 
structure, not forming closed sacs, as in the majority of Teleostei, 
but consisting of laminae exposed to the body cavity. The 
laminae in which the eggs are produced are very numerous, and 
are attached transversely by their inner edges to a membranous 
band running nearly the whole length of the body-cavity. The 
majority of the eels captured for market are females with the 
ovaries in an immature condition. The male eel was first dis- 
covered in 1873 by Syrski at Trieste, the testis being described by 
him as a lobed elongated organ, in the same relative position as 
the ovary in the female, surrounded by a smooth surface without 
laminae. He did not find ripe spermatozoa. He discovered the 
male by examining small specimens, all the larger being female. 
L. Jacoby, a later observer, found no males exceeding 19 in. in 
length, while the female may reach a length of 39 in. or more. 
Dr C. G. J. Petersen, in a paper published in 1896, states that in 
Denmark two kinds of eels are distinguished by the fishermen, 
namely, yellow eels and silver eels. The silver eels are further 
distinguished by the shape of the snout and the size of the eyes. 
The snout in front of the eyes is not flat, as in the yellow eels, but 
high and compressed, and therefore appears more pointed, while 
the eyes are much larger and directed outwards. In both kinds 
there are males and females, but Petersen shows that the yellow 
eels change into silver eels when they migrate to the sea. The 
sexual organs in the silver eels are more developed than in the 
yellow eels, and the former have almost or entirely ceased to take 
food. The male silver eels are from 11^ to 19 in. in length, 
the females from i6| to about 39 in. It is evident, therefore, 
that if eels only spawn once, they do not all reach the same size 
when they become sexually mature. The male conger was first 


described in 1879 by Hermes, who obtained a ripe specimen 
in the Berlin Aquarium. This specimen was not quite 25 ft. 
in length, and of the numerous males which have been identified 
at the Plymouth Laboratory, none exceeded this length. The 
large numbers of conger above this size caught for the market 
are all immature females. Female conger of 5 or 6 ft. in length 
and weighing from 30 to 50 lb are common enough, and occasion- 
ally they exceed these limits. The largest recorded was 8 ft. 3 in. 
long, and weighed 128 lb. 

There is every reason to believe that eels and conger spawn 
but once in their lives, and die soon after they have discharged 
their generative products. When kept in aquaria, both male 
and female conger are vigorous and voracious. The males 
sooner or later cease to feed, and attain to the sexually mature 
condition, emitting ripe milt when handled and gently squeezed. 
They live in this condition five or six months, taking no food 
and showing gradual wasting and disease of the bodily organs. 
The eyes and skin become ulcerated, the sight is entirely lost, 
and the bones become soft through loss of lime. The females 
also after a time cease to feed, and live in a fasting condition 
for five or six months, during which time the ovaries develop 
and reach great size and weight, while the bones become soft 
and the teeth disappear. The female, however, always dies in 
confinement before the ova are perfectly ripe and before they 
are liberated from the ovarian tissue. The absence of some 
necessary condition, perhaps merely of the pressure which exists 
at the bottom of the sea, evidently prevents the complete 
development of the ovary. The invariable death of the fish in 
the same almost ripe condition leads to the conclusion that under 
normal conditions the fish dies after the mature ova have been 
discharged. G. B. Grassi states that he obtained ripe male eels, 
and ripe specimens of Muraena, another genus of the family, 
in the whirlpools of the Strait of Messina. A ripe female Muraena 
has also been described at Zanzibar. Gravid female eels, i.e. 
specimens with ovaries greatly enlarged, have been occasionally 
obtained in fresh water, but there is no doubt that, normally, 
sexual maturity is attained only in the sea. 

Until recent years nothing was known from direct observation 
concerning the reproduction of the common eel or any species 
of the family. It was a well-known fact that large eels migrated 
towards the sea in autumn, and that in the spring small trans- 
parent eels of 2 in. in length and upwards were common on the 
shore under stones, and ascended rivers and streams in vast 
swarms. It was reasonable, therefore, to infer that the mature 
eels spawned in the sea, and that there the young were developed. 

A group of peculiar small fishes were, however, known which 
were called Leptocephali, from the small proportional size of 

Leptocephali. (By permission of J. & A, Churchill.) 

the head. The first of these described was captured in 1703 
near Holyhead, and became the type of L. Morrisii, other 
specimens of which have been taken either near the shore or at 
the surface of the sea. Other forms placed in the same genus 
had been taken by surface fishing in the Mediterranean and in 

tropical ocean currents. The chief peculiarities of Leptocephali, 
in addition to the smallness of the head, are their ribbon-like 
shape and their glassy transparency during life. The body is 
flattened from side to side, and broad from the dorsal to the 
ventral edge. Like the eels, they are destitute of pelvic fins, 
and no generative organs have been observed in them (see fig.). 

In 1864 the American naturalist, T. N. Gill, published the con- 
clusion that L. Morrisii was the young or larva of the conger, and 
Leptocephali generally the young stages of species of Muraenidae. 
In 1886 this conclusion was confirmed from direct observation 
by Yves Delage, who kept alive in a tank at Roscoff a specimen 
of L. Morrisii, and saw it gradually transformed into a young 
conger. From 1887 to 1892 Professor Grassi and Dr Calandruccio 
carried on careful and successful researches into the development 
of the Leptocephali at Catania, in Sicily. The specimens were 
captured in considerable numbers in the harbour, and the 
transformation of L. Morrisii into young conger, and of various 
other forms of Leptocephalus into other genera of Muraenidae, 
such as Muraena, Congro-muraena and Ophichthys, was observed. 
In 1894 the same authors published the announcement that 
another species of Leptocephalus, namely, L. brevirostris, was 
the larva of the common eel. This larval form was captured 
in numbers with other Leptocephali in the strong currents of 
the Strait of Messina. In the metamorphosis of all Leptocephali 
a great reduction in size occurs. The L. brevirostris reaches a 
length of 8 cm., or a little more than 25 in., while the perfectly- 
formed young eel is 2 in. long or a little more. 

The Italian naturalists have also satisfied themselves that 
certain pelagic fish eggs originally described by Raffaele at Naples 
are the eggs of Muraenidae, and that among them are the eggs 
of Conger and Anguilla. They believe that these eggs, although 
free in the water, remain usually near the bottom at great 
depths, and that fertilization takes place under similar conditions. 
No fish eggs of the kind to which reference is here made have 
yet been obtained on the British coasts, although conger and 
eels are so abundant there. Raffaele described and figured the 
larva newly hatched from one of the eggs under consideration, 
and it is evident that this larva is the earliest stage of a 

Although young eels, some of them more or less flat and 
transparent, are common enough on the coasts of Great Britain 
and north-western Europe in spring, neither eggs nor specimens 
of Leptocephalus brevirostris have- yet been taken in the North 
Sea, English Channel or other shallow waters in the neighbour- 
hood of the British Islands, or in the Baltic. Marked eels have 
been proved to migrate from the inmost part of the Baltic to 
the Kattegat. Recently, however, search has been made for the 
larvae in the more distant and deeper portions of the Atlantic 
Ocean. In May 1904 a true larval specimen was taken at the 
surface south-west of the Faeroe Islands, arid another was taken 
40 m. north by west of Achill Head, Ireland. In 1905 numbers 
were taken in deep water in the Atlantic. The evidence at present 
available indicates that the spawning of mature eels takes place 
beyond the 100 fathom line, and that the young eels which reach 
the coast are already a year old. As eels, both young and old, 
are able to live for a long time out of water and have the habit 
of travelling at night over land in wet grass and in damp weather, 
there is no difficulty in explaining their presence in wells, ponds 
or other isolated bodies of fresh water at any distance from 
the sea. 

See " The Eel Question," Report U.S. Commissioner of Fisheries 
for 1879 (Washington, 1882); J. T. Cunningham, " Reproduction 
and Development of the Conger," Journ. Mar. Biol. Assn. vol. ii.; 
C. G. J. Petersen, Report Dan. Biol. Station, v. (1894) ; G. B. Grassi, 
Quart. Journ. Mic. Sci. vol. xxxix. (1897). (J. T. C.) 

EFFENDI (a Turkish word, corrupted from the Gr. av6'am)s, 
a lord or master), a title of respect, equivalent to the English 
" sir," in the Turkish empire and some other eastern countries. 
It follows the personal name, when that is used, and is generally 
given to members of the learned professions, and to government 
officials who have no higher rank, such as Bey, Pasha, &c. It 
may also indicate a definite office, as Hakim effendi,chiei physician 



to the sultan. The possessive form effendim (my master) is used 
by servants and in formal intercourse. 

EFFIGIES, MONUMENTAL. An " effigy " (Lat. effigies, from 
effingere, to fashion) is, in general, a material image or likeness 
of a person; and the practice of hanging or burning people 
" in effigy," i.e. their semblance only, preserves the more general 
sense of the word. Such representations may be portraits, 
caricatures or models. But, apart from general usages of the 
term (see e.g. Wax Figures), it is more particularly applied in 
the history of art to a particular class of sculptured figures, in 
the flat or the round, associated with Christian sepulchral 
monuments, dating from the 12th century. The earliest of these 
attempts at commemorative portraiture were executed in low 
relief upon coffin-lids of stone or purbeck marble, some portions 
of the designs for the most part being executed by means of 
incised lines, cut upon the raised figure. Gradually, with the 
increased size and the greater architectural dignity of monu- 
mental structures, effigies attained to a high rank as works of 
art, so that before the close of the 13th century very noble 
examples of figures of this order are found to have been executed 
in full relief; and, about the same period, similar figures also 
began to be engraved, either upon monumental slabs of stone 
or marble, or upon plates of metal, which were affixed to the 
surfaces of slabs that were laid in the pavements of churches. 

Engraved plates of this class, known as " Brasses " (see 
Brasses, Monumental), continued in favour until the era of 
the Reformation, and in recent times their use has been revived. 
It seems probable that the introduction and the prevalence of 
flat engraved memorials, in place of commemorative effigies in 
relief, was due, in the first instance, to the inconvenience re- 
sulting from increasing numbers of raised stones on the pavement 
of churches; while the comparatively small cost of engraved 
plates, their high artistic capabilities, and their durability, 
combined to secure for them the popularity they unquestionably 
enjoyed. If considerably less numerous than contemporary 
incised slabs and engraved brasses, effigies sculptured in relief — 
with some exceptions in full relief — continued for centuries to 
constitute the most important features in many medieval 
monuments. In the 13th century, their origin being apparently 
derived from the endeavour to combine a monumental effigy 
with a monumental cross upon the same sepulchral stone 
(whether in sculpture or by incised lines), parts only of the 
human figure sometimes were represented, such as the head or 
bust, and occasionally also the feet; in some of the early ex- 
amples of this curious class the cross symbol was not introduced, 
and after awhile half-length figures became common. 

Except in very rare instances, that most important element, 
genuine face-portraiture, is not to be looked for, in even the 
finest sculptured effigies, earlier than about the middle of the 
15th century. In works of the highest order of art, indeed, the 
memorials of personages of the most exalted rank, effigies from 
an early period in their existence may be considered occasionally 
to have been portraits properly so called; and yet even in such 
works as these an approximately correct general resemblance 
but too frequently appears to have been all that was contemplated 
or desired. At the same time, in the earliest monumental 
effigies we possess contemporary examples of vestments, costume, 1 
armour, weapons, royal and knightly insignia, and other personal 
appointments and accessories, in all of which accurate fidelity 
has been certainly observed with scrupulous care and minute 
exactness. Thus, since the monumental effigies of England 
are second to none in artistic merit, while they have been pre- 
served in far greater numbers, and generally in better condition 
than those in other countries, they represent in unbroken 
continuity an unrivalled series of original personal representa- 
tions of successive generations, very many of them being, in 

1 It is well known that the costume of effigies nearly always 
represented what was actually worn by the remains of the person 
commemorated, when prepared for interment and when lying in 
state; and, in like manner, the aspect of the lifeless countenance, 
even if not designedly reproduced by medieval " image " makers, 
may long have exercised a powerful influence upon their ideas of 
consistent monumental portraiture. 

the most significant acceptation of that term, veritable con- 
temporaneous portraits. 

Once esteemed to be simply objects of antiquarian curiosity, 
and either altogether disregarded or too often subjected to 
injurious indignity, the monumental effigies in England long 
awaited the formation of a just estimate of their true character 
and their consequent worth in their capacity as authorities for 
face-portraiture. In the original contract for the construction 
of the monument at Warwick to Richard Beauchamp, the fifth 
earl, who died in 1439, it is provided that an effigy of the deceased 
noble should be executed in bronze gilt, with all possible care, 
by the most skilful and experienced artists of the time; and 
the details of the armour and the ornaments of the figure are 
specified with minute precision. It is remarkable, however, 
that the effigy itself is described only in the general and inde- 
finite terms — " an image of a man armed. " There is no provision 
that the effigy should be " an image " of the earl; and much 
less is anything said as to its being such a "counterfeit pre- 
sentment "of the features and person of the living man, as the 
contemporaries of Shakespeare had learned to expect in what 
they would accept as true portraiture. The effigy, almost as 
perfect as when it left the sculptor's hands, still bears witness, 
as well to the conscientious care with which the conditions of 
the contract were fulfilled, as to the eminent ability of the artists 
employed. So complete is the representation of the armour, 
that this effigy might be considered actually to have been 
equipped in the earl's own favourite suit of the finest Milan steel. 
The cast of the figure also was evidently studied from what the 
earl had been when in life, and the countenance is sufficiently 
marked and endowed with the unmistakable attributes of 
personal character. Possibly such a resemblance may have 
been the 'highest aim in the image-making of the period, some- 
what before the middle of the 15th century. Three-quarters 
of a century later, a decided step towards fidelity in true 
portraiture is shown to have been taken, when, in his will (1510 
a.d.), Henry VII. spoke of the effigies of himself and of his late 
queen, Elizabeth of York, to be executed for their monument, 
as " an image of our figure and another of hers." The existing 
effigies in the Beauchamp chapel and in Henry VII. 's chapel, 
with the passages just quoted from the contract made by the 
executors of the Lancastrian earl, strikingly illustrate the gradual 
development of the idea of true personal portraiture in monu- 
mental effigies, during the course of the 15th and at the 
commencement of the 16th century in England. 

Study of the royal effigies still preserved must commence in 
Worcester Cathedral with that of King John. This earliest 
example of a series of effigies of which the historical value has 
never yet been duly appreciated is rude as a work of art, and yet 
there is on it the impress of such individuality as demonstrates 
that the sculptor did his best to represent the king. Singularly 
fine as achievements of the sculptor's art are the effigies of 
Henry III., Queen Eleanor of Castile, and her ill-fated son 
Edward II., the two former in Westminster Abbey, the last in 
Gloucester cathedral; and of their fidelity also as portraits no 
doubt can be entertained. In like manner the effigies of 
Edward III. and his queen Philippa, and those of their grandson 
Richard II. and his first • consort, Anne of Bohemia (all at 
Westminster), and of their other grandson, Henry of Lancaster, 
with his second consort, Joan of Navarre, at Canterbury — all 
convince us that they are true portraits. Next follow the effigies 
of Henry VII. and Elizabeth of York, — to be succeeded, and 
the royal series to be completed, by the effigies of Queen Elizabeth 
and Mary Stuart, all of them in Westminster Abbey. Very 
instructive would be a close comparison between the two last- 
named works and the painted portraits of the rival queens, 
especially in the case of Mary, the pictures of whom differ so 
rernarkably frpj»>"v> another. 

As the 15m century advanced, the rank of the personage 
represented and the character of the art that distinguishes any 
effigy goes far to determine its portrait qualities. Still later, 
when more exact face-portraiture had become a recognized 
element, sculptors must be supposed to have aimed at the 



production of such resemblance as their art would enable them 
to give to their works; and accordingly, when we compare 
effigies with painted portraits of the same personages, we find 
that they corroborate one another. The prevalence of por- 
traiture in the effigies of the 16th and 17th centuries, when their 
art generally underwent a palpable decline, by no means raises 
all works of this class, or indeed the majority of them, to the 
dignity of true portraits; on the contrary, in these effigies, as 
in those of earlier periods, it is the character of the art in each 
particular example that affects its merit, value and authority 
as a portrait. In judging of these latter effigies, however, we 
must estimate them by the standard of art of their own era; 
and, as a general rule, the effigies that are the best as works of 
art in their own class are the best also and the most faithful in 
their portraiture. The earlier effigies, usually produced without 
any express aim at exact portraiture, as we now employ that 
expression, have nevertheless strong claims upon our veneration. 
Often their sculpture is very noble; and even when they are 
rudest as works of art, there is rarely lacking a rough grandeur 
about them, as exhibited in the fine bold figure of Fair 
Rosamond's son, Earl William of the Long Sword, which reposes 
in such dignified serenity in his own cathedral at Salisbury. 
These effigies may not bring us closely face to face with remote 
generations, but they do place before us true images of what the 
men and women of those generations were. 

Observant students of monumental effigies will not fail to 
appreciate the singular felicity with which the medieval sculptors 
adjusted their compositions to the recumbent position in which 
their " images " necessarily had to be placed. Equally worthy 
of notice is the manner in which many monumental effigies, 
particularly those of comparatively early date, are found to have 
assumed an aspect neither living nor lifeless, and yet impressively 
life-like. The sound judgment also, and the good taste of those 
early sculptors, were signally exemplified in their excluding, 
almost without exception, the more extravagant fashions in 
the costume of their era from their monumental sculpture, and 
introducing only the simpler but not less characteristic styles 
of dress and appointments. Monumental effigies, as commonly 
understood, represent recumbent figures, and the accessories 
of the effigies themselves have been adjusted to that position. 
With the exceptions when they appear on one side resting on 
the elbow (as in the case of Thomas Owen (d. 1598) and Sir 
Thomas Heskett (d. 1605), both in Westminster Abbey), these 
effigies he on their backs, and as a general rule (except in the case 
of episcopal figures represented in the act of benediction, or of 
princes and warriors who sometimes hold a sceptre or a sword) 
their hands are uplifted and conjoined as in supplication. The 
crossed-legged attitude of numerous armed effigies of the era of 
mail-armour has been supposed to imply the personages so 
represented to have been crusaders or Knights of the Temple; 
but in either case the supposition is unfounded and inconsistent 
with unquestionable facts. Much beautiful feeling is conveyed by 
figures of ministering angels being introduced as in the act of 
supporting and smoothing the pillows or cushions that are placed 
in very many instances to give support to the heads of the re- 
cumbent effigies. The animals at the feet of these effigies, 
which frequently have an heraldic significance, enabled the 
sculptors, with equal propriety and effectiveness, to overcome 
one of the special difficulties inseparable from the recumbent 
position. In general, monumental effigies were carved in stone 
or marble, or cast in bronze, but occasionally they were of wood: 
such is the effigy of Robert Curthose, son of William I. (d. 1135), 
whose altar tomb in Gloucester cathedral was probably set up 
about 1320. 

In addition to recumbent statues, upright figures must receive 
notice here, especially those set in wall-monuments in churches 
mainly. These usually consisted in half-length figures, seen 
full-face, placed in a recess within an architectural setting more 
or less elaborate. They belong mainly to the 16th and 17th 
centuries. Among the many examples in old St Paul's cathedral 
(destroyed in the Great Fire of 1666) were those of Dean Colet 
(d. kiq), William Aubrey 'i^sJand Alexander Nowell(d. 1601). 

In St Giles's, Cripplegate, is the similarly designed effigy of John 
Speed (d. 1629); while that of John Stow (d. 1605) is a full- 
length, seated figure. This, like the figure of Thomas Owen, is 
in alabaster, but since its erection has always been described 
as terra-cotta — a material which came into considerable favour 
for the purpose of busts and half-lengths towards the end of the 
1 6th century, imported, of course, from abroad. Sometimes 
the stone monuments were painted to resemble life, as in the 
monuments to Shakespeare and John Combe (the latter now 
over-painted white), in Holy Trinity Church, Stratford- 

Bibliography. — Among the more noteworthy publications are 
the following: Monumental Effigies in Great Britain (Norman 
Conquest to Henry VIII.), by C. A. Stothard, folio (London, 1876); 
The Recumbent Monumental Effigies in Northamptonshire, by A. 
Hartshorne (4to, London, 1867-1876); Sepulchral Memorials 
(Northamptonshire), by W. H. Hyett (folio, London, 1817); Ancient 
Sepulchral Effigies and Monumental Sculpture of Devon, by W. H. H. 
Rogers (4to, Exeter, 1877); The Ancient Sepulchral Monuments 
of Essex, ed. by C. M. Carlton (4to, Chelmsford, 1890) ; and other 
works dealing with the subject according to counties. Of particular 
value is the Report of the Sepulchral Monuments Committee of the 
Society of Antiquaries, laboriously compiled at the request of the 
Office of Works, arranged (1) personally and chronologically, and 
(2) locally (1872). (C. B.;M. H. S.) 

EGAN, PIERCE (1772-1849), English sporting writer, was born 
in London in 1772., He began life as sporting reporter for the 
newspapers, and was soon recognized as the best of his day. In 
1814 he wrote, set and printed a book about the relations ofthe 
prince regent (afterwards George IV.) and Miss Robinson, called 
The Mistress of Royalty, or the Loves of Florizel and Perdita. But 
his best-known work is Life in London, or Days and Nights of Jerry 
Hawthorne and his Elegant Friend Corinthian Tom (1821), a book x 
describing the amusements of sporting men, with illustrations by 
Cruikshank. This book took the popular fancy and was one of 
Thackeray's early favourites (see his Roundabout Papers). It 
was repeatedly imitated, and several dramatic versions were 
produced in London. A sequel containing more of country sports 
and misadventures probably suggested Dickens's Pickwick 
Papers. In 1824 Pierce Egan's Life in London and Sporting 
Guide was started, a weekly newspaper afterwards incorporated 
with Bell's Life. Among his numerous other books are Boxiana 
(1818), Life of an Actor (1824), Book of Sports (1832), and the 
Pilgrims of the Thames (1838). Egan died at Pentonville on the 
3rd of August 1849. 

His son, Pierce Egan (1814-1880), illustrated his own and his 
father's books, and wrote a score of novels of varying merit, of 
which The Snake in the Grass (1858) is perhaps the best. 

EGBO, a secret society flourishing chiefly among the Efiks of 
the Calabar district, West Africa. Egbo or Ekpe is a mysterious 
spirit who lives in the jungle and is supposed to preside at the 
ceremonies of the society. Only males can join, boys being 
initiated about the age of puberty. Members are bound by oath 
of secrecy, and fees on entrance are payable. The Egbo-men are 
ranked in seven or nine grades, for promotion to each of which 
fresh initiation ceremonies, fees and oaths are necessary. The 
society combines a kind of freemasonry with political and law- 
enforcing aims. For instance any member wronged in an Egbo 
district, that is one dominated by the society, has only to address 
an Egbo-man or, beat the Egbo drum in the Egbo-house, or 
" blow Egbo " as it is called, i.e. sound the Egbo horn before the 
hut of the wrong-doer, and the whole machinery of the society is 
put in force to see justice done. Formerly the society earned as 
bad a name as most secret sects, from the barbarous customs 
mingled with its rites; but the British authorities have been able 
to make use of it in enforcing order and helping on civilization. 
The Egbo-house, an oblong building like the nave of a church, 
usually stands in the middle of the villages. The walls are of clay 
elaborately painted inside and ornamented with clay figures in 
relief. Inside are wooden images, sometimes of an obscene 
nature, to which reverence is paid. Much social importance 
attaches to the highest ranks of Egbo-men, and it is said that very 
large sums, sometimes more than a thousand pounds, are paid 
to attain these dignities. At certain festivals in the year the 



Egbo-men wear black wooden masks with horns which it is death 
for any woman to look on. 

See Mary H. Kingsley, West African Studies (1901); Rev. Robt. 
H. Nassau, Fetichism in West Africa (1904) ; C. Partridge, Cross 
River Natives (1905). 

EGEDE, HANS (1686-1758), Norwegian missionary, was born 
in the vogtship of Senjen, Norway, on the 31st of January 1686. 
He studied at the university of Copenhagen, and in 1706 became 
pastor at Vaagen in the Lofoten islands, but the study of the 
chronicles of the northmen having awakened in him the desire to 
visit the colony of Northmen in Greenland, and to convert them 
to Christianity, he resigned his charge in 17 17; and having, after 
great difficulty, obtained the sanction and help of the Danish 
government in his enterprise, he set sail with three ships from 
Bergen on the 3rd of May i72r, accompanied by his wife and 
children. He landed on the west coast of Greenland on the 3rd of 
July, but found to his dismay that the Northmen were entirely 
superseded by the Eskimo, in whom he had no particular interest, 
and whose language he would be able to master, if at all, only after 
years of study. But, though compelled to endure for some years 
great privations, and at one time to see the result of his labours 
almost annihilated by the ravages of small-pox, he remained 
resolutely at his post. He founded the colony of Godthaab, and 
soon gained the affections of the people. He converted many of 
them to Christianity, and established a considerable commerce 
with Denmark. Ill-health compelling him to return home in 
1736, he was made principal of a seminary at Copenhagen, in 
which workers were trained for the Greenland mission; and from 
1740 to 1747 he was superintendent of the mission. He died on 
the 5th of November 1758. He is the author of a book on the 
natural history of Greenland. 

His work in Greenland was continued, on his retirement, by 
his son Paul Egede (1708-1789), who afterwards returned to 
Denmark and succeeded his father as superintendent of the 
Greenland mission. Paul Egede also became professor of 
theology in the mission seminary. He published a Greenland- 
Danish-Latin dictionary (1750), Greenland grammar (1760) and 
Greenland catechism (1756). In 1766 he completed the transla- 
tion begun by his father of the New Testament into, the Green- 
land tongue; and in 1787 he translated Thomas a. Ke'mpis. In 
1789 he published a journal of his life in Greenland. 

EGER, AQIBA (1761-1837), Jewish scholar, was for the last 
twenty-five years of his life rabbi of Posen. He was a rigorous 
casuist of the old school, and his chief works were legal notes on 
the Talmud and the code of Qaro (q.v.). He believed that 
religious education was enough, and thus opposed the party which 
favoured secular schools. He was a determined foe of the 
reform movement, which began to make itself felt in his 

EGER (Czech, Cheb), a town of Bohemia, Austria, 148 m. 
W.N.W. of Prague by rail. Pop. (1900) 23,665. It is situated 
on the river Eger, at the foot of one of the spurs of the Fichtel- 
gebirge, and lies in the centre of a German district of about 
40,000 inhabitants, who are distinguished from the surrounding 
population by their costumes, language, manners and customs. 
On the rock, to the N.W. of the town, lies the Burg or Castle, 
built probably in the 12th century, and now in ruins. It 
possesses a massive black tower, built of blocks of lava, and in 
the courtyard is an interesting chapel, in Romanesque style with 
fantastic ornamentations, which was finished in the 13th century. 
In the banquet-room of this castle Wallenstein's officers Terzky, 
Kinsky, Mo and Neumann were assassinated a few hours before 
Wallenstein himself was murdered by Captain Devereux. The 
murder took place on the 25th of February 1634 in .the town- 
house, which was at that time the burgomaster's house. The 
rooms occupied by Wallenstein have been transformed since 1872 
into a museum, which contains many historical relics and 
antiquities of the town of Eger. The handsome and imposing St 
Nicholas church was built in the 13th century and restored in 
1892. There is a considerable textile industry, together with the 
manufacture of shoes, machinery and milling. Eger was the 
birthplace of the novelist and playwright Braun von Braunthal 

(1802-1866). About 3 m. N.W. of Eger is the well-known 
watering place of Franzensbad {q.v.). 

The district of Eger was in 870 included in the new margraviate 
of East Franconia, which belonged at first to the Babenbergs, but 
from 906 to the counts of Vohburg, who took the title of margraves 
of Eger. By the marriage, in 1149, of Adela of Vohburg with 
the emperor Frederick I., Eger came into the possession of the 
house of Swabia, and remained in the hands of the emperors 
until the 13th century. In 1265 it was taken by Ottakar II. of 
Bohemia, who retained it for eleven years. After being repeatedly 
transferred from the one power to the other, according to the 
preponderance of Bohemia or the empire, the town and territory 
were finally incorporated with Bohemia in 1350, after the 
Bohemian king became the emperor Charles IV. Several im- 
perial privileges, however, continued to be enjoyed by the town 
till 1849. It suffered severely during the Hussite war, during the 
Swedish invasion in 1631 and 1647, an d in the War of the Austrian . 
Succession in 1742. 

See Drivok, Altere Geschichte der deutschen Reichstadt Eger und 
des Reichsgebietes Egerland (Leipzig, 1875). 

EGER (Ger. Erlau, Med. Lat. Agria), a town of Hungary, 
capital of the county of Heves, 90 m. E.N.E. of Budapest by rail. 
Pop. (1900) 24,650. It is beautifully situated in the valley of the 
river Eger, an affluent of the Theiss, and on the eastern outskirts 
of the Matra mountains. Eger is the see of an archbishopric, 
and owing to its numerous ecclesiastical buildings has received 
the name of " the Hungarian Rome." Amongst the principal 
buildings are the beautiful cathedral in the Italian style, with a 
handsome dome 130 ft. high, erected in 1831-1834 by the arch- 
bishop Ladislaus Pyrker (1772-1847); the church of the Brothers 
of Mercy, opposite which is a handsome minaret, 115 ft. high, 
the remains of a mosque dating from the Turkish occupation, 
other Roman Catholic churches, and an imposing Greek church. 
The archiepiscopal palace; the lyceum, with a good library and 
an astronomical observatory; the seminary for Roman priests; 
and the town-hall are all noteworthy. On an eminence N.E. of 
the town, laid out as a park, are the ruins of the old fortress, and 
a monument of Stephen Dobo, the heroic defender of the town 
against the assaults of the Turks in 1 5 5 2 . The chief occupation of 
the inhabitants is the cultivation of the vineyards of the surround- 
ing hills, which produce the red Erlauer wine, one of the best in 
Hungary. To the S.W. of Eger, in the same county of Heves, 
is situated the town of Gyongyos (pop. 15,878). It lies on the 
south-western outskirts of the Matra mountains, and carries on a 
brisk trade in the Erlauer wine, which is produced throughout the 
district. The Hungarians defeated the Austrians at Gyongyos on 
the 3rd of April 1849. To the S.W. of Gyongyos is situated the 
old town of Hatvan (pop. 9698), which is now a busy railway 
junction, and possesses several industrial establishments. 

Eger is an old town, and owes its importance to the bishopric 
created by King Stephen in 1010, which was one of the richest 
in the whole of Hungary. In 1552 Eger resisted the repeated 
assaults of a large Turkish force; in 1596, however, it was given 
up to the Turks by the Austrian party in the garrison, and 
remained in their possession until 1687. It was created an arch- 
bishopric in 1814. During the revolution of 1848-1849, Eger, 
was remarkable for the patriotic spirit displayed by its in- 
habitants; and it was here that the principal campaigns against 
the Austrians were organized. 

EGERIA, an ancient Italian goddess of springs. Two distinct 
localities were regarded as sacred to her, — the grove of Diana 
Nemorensis at Aricia, and a spring in the immediate neighbour- 
hood of Rome at the Porta Capena. She derives her chief 
importance from her legendary connexion with King Numa, who 
had frequent interviews with her and consulted her in regard 
to his religious legislation (Livy i. 19; Juvenal iii. 12). These 
meetings took place on the spot where the sacred shield had 
fallen from heaven, and here Numa dedicated 3 grove to the 
Camenae, like Egeria deities of springs. After the death of Numa, 
Egeria was said to have fled into the grove of Aricia, where she 
was changed into a spring for having interrupted the rites of 
Diana by her lamentations (Ovid, Metam.. xv. 479). At Aricia 



there was also a Manius Egerius, a male counterpart of Egeria. 
Her connexion with Diana Nemorensis, herself a birth goddess, is 
confirmed by the fact that her aid was invoked by pregnant 
women. She also possessed the gift of prophecy; and the 
statement (Dion. Halic. ii. 60) that she was one of the Muses 
is due to her connexion with the Camenae, whose worship was 
displaced by them. 

1881), English palaeontologist, was born on thei3th of November 
1806, the son of the 9th baronet. He was educated at Eton and 
Christ Church, Oxford, where he graduated B.A. in 1828. While 
at college his interest in geology was aroused by the lectures of 
W. Buckland, and by his acquaintance with W. D. Conybeare. 
Subsequently when travelling in Switzerland with Lord Cole 
(afterwards 3rd earl of Enniskillen) they were introduced to 
Prof. L. Agassiz at Neufchatel, and determined to make a special 
study of fossil fishes. During the course of fifty years they 
gradually gathered together two of the largest and finest of 
private collections — that of Sir Philip Grey Egerton being at 
Oulton Park, Tarporley, Cheshire. He described the structure 
and affinities of numerous species in the publications of the 
Geological Seciety of London, the Geological Magazine and the 
Decades of the Geological Survey; and in recognition of his 
services the Wollaston medal was awarded to him in 1873 by the 
Geological Society. He was elected F.R.S. in 1831, and was a 
trustee of the British Museum. As a member of Parliament he 
represented the city of Chester in 1830, the southern division of 
Cheshire from 1835 until 1868, and the western division from 
1868 to 1881. He died in London on the 6th of April 1881. His 
collection of fossil fishes is now in the British Museum. 

EGG, AUGUSTUS LEOPOLD (1816-1863), English painter, 
was born on the 2nd of May 18 16 in London, where his father 
carried on business as a gun-maker. He had some schooling at 
Bexley, and was not at first intended for the artistic profession; 
but, developing a faculty in this line, he entered in 1834 the 
drawing class of Mr Sass, and in 1836 the school of the Royal 
Academy. His first exhibited picture appeared in 1837 at the 
Suffolk Street gallery. In 1838 he began exhibiting in the 
Academy, his subject being a " Spanish Girl "; altogether he 
sent twenty-seven works to this institution. In 1848 he became 
an associate and in i860 a full member of the Academy: he had 
considerable means, apart from his profession. In 1857 he took a 
leading part in selecting and arranging the modern paintings in the 
Art-Treasures Exhibition in Manchester. His constitution being 
naturally frail, he went in 1853, with Dickens and Wilkie Collins, 
to Italy for a short trip, and in 1863 he visited Algeria. Here he 
benefited so far as his chronic lung-disease was concerned; but 
exposure to a cold wind while out riding brought on an attack of 
asthma, from which he died on the 26th of March 1863 at Algiers, 
near which city his remains were buried. 

Egg was a gifted and well-trained painter of genre, chiefly in 
the way of historical anecdote, or of compositions from the poets 
and novelists. Among his principal pictures may be named: 
1843, the " Introduction of Sir Piercie Shafton and Halbert 
Giendinning" (from Scott's Monastery); 1846, "Buckingham 
Rebuffed "; 1848, " Queen Elizabeth discovers she is no longer 
young"; 1850, "Peter the Great sees Catharine for the first 
time "; 1854, " Charles I. raising the Standard at Nottingham " 
(a study); 1855, the " Life and Death of Buckingham "; 1857 
and 1858, two subjects from Thackeray's Esmond; 1858, "Past 
and Present, a triple picture of a faithless wife " ; 1859, the " Night 
before Naseby "; i860, his last exhibited work, the Dinner 
Scene from The Taming of the Shrew. The Tate Gallery contains 
one of his earlier pictures, Patricio entertaining two Ladies, from 
the Diable boiteux; it was painted in 1844. 

Egg was rather below the middle height, with dark hair and 
a handsome well-formed face; the head of Peter the Great (in 
the picture of Peter and Catharine, which may be regarded as his 
best work, along with the Life and Death of Buckingham) 
was studied, but of course considerably modified, from his own 
countenance. He was manly, kind-hearted, pleasant, and very 
genial and serviceable among brother-artists; social and com- 

panionable, but holding mainly aloof from fashionable circles. 
As an actor he had uncommon talent. He appeared among 
Dickens's company of amateurs in 1832 in Lord Lytton's 
comedy Not so Bad as we Seem, and afterwards in Wilkie Collins's 
Frozen Deep, playing the humorous part of Job Want. 

EGG (O.E. aeg, cf. Ger. Ei, Swed. aegg, and prob. Gr. i>6v, 
Lat. ovum), the female reproductive cell or ovum of animals, 
which gives rise generally only after fertilization to the young. 
The largest eggs are those of birds; and this because, to the 
minute, essential portion of the egg, or germ, from which the 
young bird grows, there is added a large store of food-material — 
the yolk and white of the egg — destined to nourish the growing 
embryo while the whole is enclosed within a hard shell. 

The relative sizes of eggs depend entirely on the amount of the 
food-yolk thus enclosed with the germ; while the form and 
texture of the outer envelope are determined by the nature of 
the environment to which the egg is exposed. Where the food 
material is infinitesimal in quantity the egg Is either not ex- 
truded — the embryo being nourished by the maternal tissues, — 
or it passes out-of the parental body and gives rise at once to a 
free-living organism or " larva " (see Larval Forms), as in the 
case of many lowly freshwater and marine animals. In such 
cases no " egg " in the usual sense of the term is produced. 

The number of eggs periodically produced by any give,. 
individual depends on the risks of destruction to which they, and 
the young to which they give rise, are exposed: not more than a 
single egg being annually laid by some species, while with others 
the number may amount to millions. 

Birds' Eggs. — The egg of the bird affords, for general purposes, 
the readiest example of the modifications imposed on eggs by 
the external environment. Since it must be incubated by the 
warmth of the parent's body, the outer envelope has taken the 
form of a hard shell for the protection of the growing chick from 
pressure, while the dyes which commonly colour the surface of 
this shell serve as a screen to hide it from egg-eating animals. 

Carbonate of lime forms the principal constituent of this shell; 
but in addition phosphate of lime and magnesia are also present. 
In section, this shell will be found to be made up of three more 
or less distinct crystalline layers, traversed by vertical canals, 
whereby the shell is made porous so as to admit air to the 
developing chick. 

The outermost, or third, layer of this shell often takes the form 
of a glaze, as of procelain, as for example in the burnished egg of 
the ostrich: or it may assume the character of a thick, chalky 
layer as in some cuckoos (Guira, Crotophaga ani), cormorants, 
grebes and flamingoes: while in some birds as in the auks, gulls 
and tinamous, this outer layer is wanting; yet the tinamous have 
the most highly glazed eggs of all birds, the second layer of the 
shell developing a surface even more perfectly burnished than 
that formed by the outermost, third layer in the ostrich. 

While the eggs of some birds have the shell so thin as to be 
translucent, e.g. kingfisher, others display considerable thickness, 
the maximum being reached in the egg of the extinct Aepyornis. 

Though in shape differing but little from that of the familiar 
hen's egg, certain well-marked modifications of form are yet to be 
met with. Thus the eggs of the plover are pear-shaped, of the 
sand-grouse more or less cylindrical, of the owls and titmice 
spherical and of the grebes biconical. 

In the matter of coloration the eggs of birds present a remark- 
able range. The pigments to which this coloration is due have been 
shown, by means of their absorption spectra (Sorby, Proc. Zool. 
Soc, 1875), to be seven in number. The first of these, oorhodeine, 
is brown-red in tone, and rarely absent: the second and third, 
oocyanin, and banded oocyanin, are of a beautiful blue, and 
though differing spectroscopically give rise to the same product 
when oxidized: the fourth and fifth are yellow, and rufous 
ooxanthine, the former combining with oocyanin gives rise to the 
wonderful malachite green of the emu's egg, while the latter 
occurs only in the eggs of tinamous: the sixth is lichenoxanthine, 
a pigment not yet thoroughly known but present in the shells of 
all eggs having a peculiar brick-red colour. Still less is known of 



the seventh pigment which is, as yet, nameless. It is a substance 
giving a banded absorption spectrum, and which, mixed with 
other pigments, imparts an abnormally browner tint. The 
origin of these pigments is yet uncertain, but it is probable that 
they are derived from the haemoglobin or red colouring matter of 
the blood. This being so, then the pigments of the egg-shell differ 
entirely in their nature from those which colour the yolk or the 

While many eggs are either colourless or of one uniform tint, 
the majority have the surface broken up by spots or hjies, or 
a combination of both, of varying tints: the pigment being 
deposited as the egg passes down the lower portion of the oviduct. 
That the egg during this passage turns slowly on its long axis is 
shown by the fact that the spots and lines have commonly a 
spiral direction; though some of the markings are made during 
periods of rest, as is shown by their sharp outlines, movement 
giving a blurred effect. Where the egg is pyriform, the large end 
makes way for the smaller. Many eggs display, in addition to the 
strongly marked spots, more or fewer fainter spots embedded in a 
deeper layer of the shell, and hence such eggs v are said to be 
" double-spotted 1 ," e.g. rails and plovers. 

Among some species, as in birds of prey, the intensity of this 
coloration is said to increase with age up to a certain point, when 
it as gradually decreases. Frequently, especially where but two 
eggs are laid (Newton) , all the dye will be deposited, sometimes 
on the first, sometimes on the last laid, leaving the other colour- 
less. But although of a number of eggs in a " clutch " — as the 
full complement of eggs in a nest is called — no two are exactly 
alike, they commonly bear a very close resemblance. Among 
certain species, however, which lay several eggs, one of the 
number invariably differs markedly from the rest, as for example 
in the eggs of the house-sparrow or in those of the sparrow-hawk, 
where, of a clutch of six, two generally differ conspicuously from 
the rest. Differing though these eggs do from the rest of the 
clutch, all yet present the characters common to the species. 
But the eggs of some birds, such as the Australian swamp quail, 
Synoecus australis, present a remarkably wide range of variation 
in the matter of coloration, no two clutches being alike, the ex- 
tremes ranging from pure white to eggs having a greenish ground 
colour and rufous spots or blotches. But a still more interesting 
illustration of variation equally marked is furnished by the 
chikor partridge (Caccabis chukar), since here the variation 
appears to be correlated with the geographical distribution of the 
species. Thus eggs taken in Greece are for the most part cream- 
coloured and unspotted; those from the Grecian Archipelago are 
generally spotted and blotched; while more to the eastward 
spots are invariably present, and the blotches attain their 
maximum development. 

But in variability the eggs of the guillemot (Lomvia troile) 
exceed all others: both in the hue of the ground colour and in 
the form of the superimposed markings, these eggs exhibit a 
wonderful range for which no adequate explanation has yet 
been given. 

Individual peculiarities of coloration are commonly repro- 
duced, not only with this species but also in others, year after 

The coloration of the egg bears no sort of relation to the 
coloration of the bird which lays it; but it bears on the other 
Stgalfl- hand a more or less direct relation to the nature of the 
caaceof environment during incubation. 
colour. White eggs may generally be regarded as repre- 

senting the primitive type of egg, since they agree in this 
particular with the eggs of reptiles. And it will generally be 
found that eggs of this hue are deposited in holes or in domed 
nests. So long indeed as nesting-places of this kind are used 
will the eggs be white. And this because coloured eggs would be 
invisible in dimly lighted chambers of this description, and 
therefore constantly exposed to the risk of being broken by the 
sitting bird, or rolling out of reach where the chamber was large 
enough to admit of this, whereas white eggs are visible so long 
as they can be reached by the faintest rays of light. Pigeons 
invariably lay white eggs; and while some deposit them in holes 

others build an open nest, a mere platform of sticks. These 
exceptions to the rule show that the depredations of egg-eating 
animals are sufficiently guarded against by the overhanging 
foliage, as well as by the great distance from the ground at 
which the nest is built. Birds which have reverted to the more 
ancient custom of nesting in holes after having developed 
pigmented eggs, have adopted the device of covering the shell 
with a layer of chalky matter (e.g. puffins) , or, to put the case more 
correctly, they have been enabled to maintain survival after 
their return to the more ancient mode of nidification, because 
this reversion was accompanied by the tendency to cover the 
pigmented surface of the shell with this light-reflecting chalky 

Eggs which are deposited on the bare ground, or in other 
exposed situations, are usually protectively coloured: that is to 
say, the hue of the shell more or less completely harmonizes with 
the ground on which the egg is placed. The eggs of the plover 
tribe afford the most striking examples of this fact. 

But the majority of birds deposit their eggs in a more or less 
elaborately constructed nest, and in such cases the egg, so far 
from being protectively coloured, often displays tints that would 
appear calculated rather to attract the attention of egg-stealing 
animals; bright blue or blue spotted with black being commonly 
met with. It may be, however, that coloration of this kind is less 
conspicuous than is generally supposed, but in any case the safety 
of the egg depends not so much on its coloration as on the character 
of the nest, which, where protective devices are necessary, must 
harmonize sufficiently with its surroundings to escape observation 
from prowling egg-stealers of all kinds. 

The size of the egg depends partly on the number produced and 
partly on the conditions determining the state of the young bird 
at hatching: hence there is a great disparity in the relative sizes 
of the eggs of different birds. Thus it will be found that young 
birds which emerge in the world blind, naked and helpless are the 
product of relatively small eggs, while on the contrary young 
hatched from relatively large eggs are down-clad and active 
from birth. 

The fact that the eggs must be brooded by the parent is also a 
controlling factor in so far as number is concerned, for no more 
can be hatched than can be covered by the sitting bird. Other 
factors, however, less understood, also exercise a controlling 
influence in this matter. Thus the ostrich lays from 1 2 to 1 6, the 
teal 15, the partridge 12-20, while among many other species the 
number is strictly limited, as in the case of the hornbills and 
guillemots, which lay but a single egg; the apteryx, divers, 
petrels and pigeons never lay more than 2, while the gulls and 
plovers never exceed 4. Tropical species are said to lay fewer 
eggs than their representatives in temperate regions, and further 
immature birds lay more and smaller eggs than when fully adult. 

Partly owing to the uniformity of shape, size and texture of the 
shell, the eggs of birds are by no means easy to distinguish, except 
in so far as their family resemblances are concerned: that is 
to say, except in particular cases, they cannot be specifically 
distinguished, and hence they are of but little or no value for the 
purposes of classification. 

Save only among the megapodes, all birds brood their eggs, 
the period of incubation varying from 1 3 days, as in small passerine 
birds, to 8 weeks, as in the cassowary, though eggs of the rhea and 
of Struthio hatch in from 5 to 6 weeks. But the megapodes 
deposit their eggs in mounds of decaying vegetable matter or in 
sand in the neighbourhood of hot springs, and there without 
further apparent care leave them. Where the nestling is active 
from the moment of hatching the eggs have a relatively longer 
incubation period than in cases where the nestlings are for a 
long while helpless. 

Eggs of Mammals. — Only in the spiny ant-eater, or Echidna, 
and the duck-billed platypus, or Ornithorhynchus, among the 
Mammalia, are the eggs provided with a large store of yolk, 
enclosed within a shell, and extruded to undergo development 
apart from the maternal tissues. In the case of the echidna the 
eggs, two in number, are about as large as those of a sparrow, 

similar in shape, and have a white, parchment-like shell. After 
expulsion they are transferred by the beak of the mother to a 
pouch resembling that of the marsupial kangaroos, and there 
they undergo development. The Otnithorhynchus, on the other 
hand, lays from two to four eggs, which in size and general 
appearance resemble those of the echidna. They are, how- 
ever, deposited in a loosely constructed nest at the end of 
a long burrow and there brooded. In Marsupials, the eggs 
are smaller than those of Echidna and Omithorhynchus, and 
they contain a larger proportion of yolk than occurs in higher 

Eggs of Reptiles. — The eggs of reptiles are invariably provided 
with a large amount of food yolk and enclosed with a firm test or 
shell, which though generally parchment-like in texture may be 
calcareous as in birds, as, for example, in many of the tortoises and 
turtles and in the crocodiles. 

Among reptiles the egg is always white or yellowish, while the 
number laid often far exceeds that in the case of birds. The 
tuatara of New Zealand, however, lays but ten — white hard- 
shelled, long and oval — at intervals between November and 
January. The long intervals between the appearance of the 
successive eggs is a characteristic feature of the reptiles, but is met 
with among the birds only in the megapodes, which, like the 
reptiles, do not " brood " their eggs. 

Among the Chelonia the number of eggs varies from two to four 
in some of the tortoises, to 200 in some of the turtles : while in the 
crocodiles between 20 and 30 are produced, hard-shelled and 

The eggs of the lizards are always white or yellowish, and 
generally soft-shelled; but the geckos and the green lizard lay 
•hard-shelled eggs. Many of the soft-shelled eggs are remarkable 
for the fact that they increase in size after extrusion, owing to the 
stretching of the membranous shell by the growing embryo. In 
the matter of number lizards are less prolific than many of the 
Chelonia, a dozen eggs being the general number, though as many 
as thirty may be produced at a time, as in the case of the common 

While as a general rule the eggs of lizards are laid in burrows or 
buried, some are retained within the body of the parent until the 
young are ready to emerge; or they may even hatch within the 
oviduct. This occurs with some chameleons and some lizards, e. g. 
the slow-worm. The common English lizard is also viviparous. 
Normally the young leaves the egg immediately after its ex- 
trusion, but if by any chance this extrusion is delayed they 
escape while yet in the oviduct. 

The majority of the snakes lay eggs, but most of the vipers and 
the aquatic snakes are viviparous, as also are a few terrestrial 
species. The shell of the egg is always soft and parchment-like. 
As a rule the number of eggs produced among the snakes is not 
large, twenty or thirty being common, but some species of python 
lay as many as a hundred. Generally, among the oviparous 
snakes the eggs are buried, but some species of boas jealously 
guard them, enclosing them within the coils of the body. 

Eggs of Amphibia. — Among the amphibia a greater variety 
obtains in the matter of the investment of the egg, as well as 
in the number, size and method of their disposal. The outer 
covering is formed by a toughening of the surface of a thick 
gelatinous coat which surrounds the essential parts of the egg. 
This coat in many species of salamander — using this name in 
the wide sense — is produced into threads which serve either to 
anchor the eggs singly or to bind them together in bunches. 

Viviparity occurs both among the limbless and the tailed 
Amphibia, the eggs hatching before they leave the oviduct or 
immediately after extrusion. The number of young so produced 
is generally not large, but the common salamander {Salamandra 
maculosa) may produce as many as fifty at a birth, though fifteen 
is the more normal figure. When the higher number is reached 
the young are relatively small and weak. 

As a rule among the Amphibia the young leave the egg in the 
form of larvae, generally known as "tadpoles"; but many 

EGG 1 1 

species produce eggs containing a sufficient amount of food 
material to enable the whole of the larval phase to be completed 
before hatching. 

Among the tailless Amphibia (frogs and toads) there are wide 
differences in the number of eggs produced, while the methods 
by which these eggs are disposed of present a marvellous 

As a rule vast quantities of eggs are shed by the female into the 
water in the form of " spawn." In the common toad as many as 
7000 eggs may be extruded at a time. These leave the body in 
the form of two long strings — one from each oviduct — of trans- 
lucent globules, gelatinous in texture, and enclosing a central 
sphere of yolk, the upper pole of which is black. The spawn of 
the common frog differs from that of the toad in that the eggs all 
adhere to form a huge jelly-like mass. But in many species the 
number of eggs produced are few; and these may be sufficiently 
stored with food-yolk to allow of the tadpole stage being passed 
before hatching, as in frogs of the genus Hylodes. In many cases 
the eggs are deposited out of the water and often in quite 
remarkable ways. 

Eggs of Fishes. — The eggs of fishes present an extremely wide 
range of form, and a no less extensive range in the matter of 
number. Both among the cartilaginous and bony fishes vivi- 
parity occurs. Most of the sharks and rays are viviparous, but in 
the oviparous species the eggs present some interesting and 
peculiar forms. Large in size, the outer coat or " shell " is in all 
cases horn-like and flexible, but differs greatly in shape. Thus 
in the egg of the larger spotted dog-fish it is oblong in shape, 
flattened from side to side, and has the angles produced into long, 
slender tendrils. As the egg is laid the lower tendrils project 
from the vent, and the mother rubs herself against some fixed 
body. The tendrils soon catch fast in some slight projection, 
when the egg is dragged forth there to remain till hatching takes 
place. A couple of narrow slits at each corner of the upper end 
serve to admit fresh water to the imprisoned embryo during the 
later stages of development; when development is complete 
escape is made through the end of the shell. In the rays or 
" skates," long spines take the place of tendrils, the egg simply 
resting at the bottom of the sea. The empty egg-cases of the 
rays are often found on the seashore, and are known as "Mermaids' 
purses." The egg of the Port Jackson shark (Cestracion) is of 
enormous size, pear-shaped, and provided with a spiral flange 
extending along the whole length of the capsule. In the Chimaera 
the egg is long, more or less spindle-shaped, and produced on each 
side into a broad flange having a fringed edge, so that the whole 
bears a close resemblance to a long leaf, broad and notched at one 
end, pointed at the other. This likeness to the seaweed among 
which it rests is doubtless a protective device, akin to that of 
protectively coloured birds' eggs. 

Among the bony fishes the eggs generally take the form of 
small spheres, enclosed within a tough membrane or capsule. 
But they present many important differences, being in some 
fishes heavy and remaining at the bottom of the water, in other 
light and floating on the surface. While in some species they are 
distributed separately, in others they adhere together in masses. 
The eggs of the salmon, for example, are heavy, hard and smooth, 
and deposited separately in a trough dug by the parent and 
afterwards covered to prevent them from being carried away by 
the stream. In the perch they are adhesive and form long band- 
like masses of spawn adhering to water-plants. In the gobies the 
egg is spindle-shaped, and attached by one end by means of a 
network of fibres, resembling rootlets; while in the smelt the egg 
is loosely suspended by a membrane formed by the peeling off 
of a part of the outer sheath of the capsule. The eggs of the 
garfish (Belone vulgaris) and of the flying-fish of the genus 
Exocoetus, attach themselves to foreign objects, or to one another, 
by means of threads or cords developed at opposite poles of 
the egg. 

Among a number of fishes the eggs float at the surface of the 
sea, often in enormous masses, when they are carried about at 
the mercy of tides 'and currents. An idea of the size which such 



masses attain may be gathered from the fact that the spawn 
of the angler-fish, Lophius piscatorius, takes the form of a sheet 
from 2 to 3 ft. wide, and 30 ft. long. Another remarkable feature 
of these floating eggs is their transparency, inasmuch as they are 
extremely difficult to see, and hence they probably escape the 
rapacious maws of spawn-eating animals. The cod tribe and 
flat-fishes lay floating eggs of this description. 

The maximum number of eggs laid by fishes varies greatly, 
some species laying relatively few, others an enormous number. 
But in all cases the number increases with the weight and age of 
the fish. Thus it has been calculated that the number laid by the 
salmon is roughly about 1000 to every pound weight of the fish, 
a 15 lb salmon laying 15,000 eggs. The sturgeon lays about 
7,000,000; the herring 50,000; the turbot 14,311,000; the sole 
134,000; the perch 280,000. Briefly, the number is greatest 
where the risks of destruction are greatest. 

The eggs of the degenerate fishes known as the lampreys and 
hag-fishes are remarkable for the fact that in the latter they 
are large in size, cylindrical in shape, and provided at each 
end with hooklets whereby they adhere one to another; while in 
the lampreys they are extremely small and embedded in a jelly. 

Molluscs. — Among the Mollusca, Crustacea and Insecta yolk- 
stored eggs of very remarkable forms are commonly produced. 

In variety, in this connexion, the Mollusca must perhaps be 
given the first place. This diversity, indeed, is strikingly illus- 
trated by the eggs of the Cephalopoda. In the squids (Loligo), 
for example, the eggs are enclosed in long cylindrical cases, of 
which there are several hundreds, attached by one end to a 
common centre; the whole series looking strangely like a rough 
mop-head. Each case, in such a cluster, contains about 250 eggs, 
or about 40,000 in all. By way of contrast the eggs of the true 
cuttle-fish (Sepia) are deposited separately, each enclosed in a 
tough, black, pear-shaped capsule which is fastened by a stalk to 
fronds of sea-weed or other object. They appear to be extruded 
at short intervals, till the full complement is laid, the whole 
forming a cluster looking like a bunch of grapes. The octopus 
differs yet again in this matter, its eggs being very small, berry- 
like, and attached to a stalk which runs through the centre of 
the mass. 

The eggs of the univalve Mollusca are hardly less varied in the 
shapes they take. In the common British Purpura lapillus they 
resemble delicate pink grains of rice set on stalks; in Busy con 
they are disk-shaped, and attached to a band nearly 3 ft. long. 
The eggs of the shell-bearing slugs (Testacella) are large, and have 
the outer coat so elastic that if dropped on a stone floor they will 
rebound several inches; while some of the snails (Bulimus) lay 
eggs having a white calcareous and slightly iridescent shell, in size 
and shape closely resembling the egg of the pigeon. Some are 
even larger than the egg of the wood-pigeon. The beautiful 
violet-snail (Ianthina) — a marine species — carries its eggs on the 
under side of a gelatinous raft. No less remarkable are the eggs of 
the whelk; since, like those of the squids, they are not laid 
separately but enveloped in capsules, and these to the number of 
many hundreds form the large, ball-like masses so commonly met 
with on the seashore. When the eggs in these capsules hatch, tb* 
crowd of embryos proceed to establish an internecine warfare, 
devouring one another till only the strongest survives ! 

With the Mollusca, as with other groups of animals, where the 
eggs are exposed to great risks they are small, produced in great 
numbers, and give rise to larvae. This is well illustrated by the 
common oyster which annually disperses about 60,000,000 eggs. 
But where the risk of destruction is slight, the eggs are large and 
produce young differing from the parent only in size, as in the case 
of the pigeon-like eggs of Bulimus. 

Crustaceans. — Among the higher Crustacea, as a rule, the eggs 
are carried by the female, attached to special appendages on the 
under side of the body. But in some — Squillas — they are de- 
posited in burrows. Generally they are relatively small so that 
the young which emerge therefrom differ markedly in appearance 
from the parents, but in deep-sea and freshwater species the eggs 

are large, when the young, on emerging, differ but little from 
the adults in appearance. 

Insects, &°c. — The eggs 0/ insects though minute, are also 
remarkable for the great variety of form which they present, 
while they are frequently objects of great beauty owing to the 
sculptured markings of the shell. They are generally laid in 
clusters, either on the ground, on the leaves of plants, or in the 
water. Some of the gnats (Culex) lay them on the water. 
Cylindrical in shape they are packed closely together , set on 
end, the whole mass forming a kind of floating raft. Frequently, 
as in the case of the stick and leaf insect, the eggs are enclosed in 
capsules of very elaborate shapes and highly ornamented. 

As to the rest of the Invertebrata — above the Protozoa the eggs 
are laid in water, or in damp places. In the former case they are 
as a rule small, and give rise to larvae; while eggs hatched on 
land are sometimes enclosed in capsules, " cocoons," as in the 
case of the earthworm, where this capsule is filled with a milky 
white fluid, of a highly nutritious character, on which the 
embryos feed. 

Among some invertebrates two different kinds of eggs are laid 
by the same individual. The water-flea, Daphnia (a crustacean) , 
lays two kinds of eggs known as " summer " and " winter " eggs. 
The summer eggs are carried by the female in a " brood-pouch " 
on the back. The " winter " eggs, produced at the approach of 
winter, differ markedly in appearance from the summer eggs, 
being larger, darker in colour, thicker shelled, and enclosed in a 
capsule formed from the shell or carapace, of the parent's body. 
" Winter eggs," however, may be produced in the height of 
summer. While the " summer eggs " are unfertilized, the winter 
eggs are fertilized by .the male, and possess the remarkable power 
of lying dormant for months or even years before they develop. 
The production of these two kinds of eggs is a device to overcame 
the cold of winter, or the drying up of the pools in which the 
species lives, during the heat of the summer. The power of 
resistance which such eggs possess may be seen in the fact that a 
sample of mud which had been kept dry for ten years still con- 
tained living eggs. In deep water where neither drought nor 
winter cold can seriously affect the Daphnias, they propagate all 
the year round by unfertilized " summer " eggs. 

Bibliography. — For further details on this subject the following 
authors should be consulted: — Mammals: F. E. Beddard, "Re- 
marks on the Ovary of Echidna," Proc. Roy. Phys. Soc. Edin. 
vol. viii. (1885) ; W. H. Caldwell, " The Embryology of Monotre- 
mata and Marsupialia," Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc. vol. 178 (1887); 
E. B. Poulton, " The Structures connected with the Ovarian Ovum 
of the Marsupialia and Monotremata," Quart. Journ. Micros. Sci. 
vol. xxiv. (1884). Birds, Systematic: — H. Seebohm, Coloured 
Figures of the Eggs of British Birds (1896); A. Newton, Ootheca 
Wooleyana (1907); E. Oates, Cat. Birds' Eggs Brit. Mus. 
(appearing), vols, i.-iv. published. General: — A. Newton, Dictionary 
of Birds (1896). Colouring matter: — Newbegin, Colour in Nature 
(1898). Reptiles and Amphibia: — H. Gadow, " Reptiles," Camb. 
Nat. Hist. (1901) ; G. A. Boulenger, " The Tailless Batrachians of 
Europe," Ray Soc. (1896). Fishes : — Bridge and Boulenger, " Fishes, 
Ascidians, <&c," Camb. Nat. Hist. (1904) ; B. Dean, Fishes Living and 
Fossil (1895); J. T. Cunningham, Marketable Marine Fishes (1896). 
Invertebrate: — G. H Carpenter, Insects, Their Structure and Life 
(1899); L. C. Miall, A History of Aquatic Insects (1895); T. R. R. 
Stebbing, Crustacea, Internat. Sci. series (1893); M. C. Cooke, 
" Mollusca," Camb. Nat. Hist. (1906). For further references to the 
above and other Invertebrate groups see various text-books on 
Entomology, Zoology. (W. P. P.) 

EGGENBERG, HANS ULRICH VON, Prince (1568-1634), 
Austrian statesman, was a son of Siegfried von Eggenberg (d. 
1594), and began life as a soldier in the Spanish service, becoming 
about 1596 a trusted servant of the archduke of Styria, after- 
wards the emperor Ferdinand II. Having become a Roman 
Catholic, he was soon the chancellor and chief adviser of 
Ferdinand, whose election as emperor he helped to secure in 1619. 
He directed the imperial policy dnring the earlier part of the 
Thirty Years' War, and was in general a friend and supporter of 
Wallenstein, and an opponent of Maximilian I., duke of Bavaria, 
and of Spain. He was largely responsible for Wallenstein's 
return to the imperial service early in 1632, and retired from 
public life just after the general's murder in February 1634, dying 



at Laibach, on the 18th of October 1634. Eggenberg's influence 
with Ferdinand was so marked that it was commonly said that 
Austria rested upon three hills (Berge): Eggenberg, Questenberg 
and Werdenberg. He was richly rewarded for his services to the 
emperor. Having received many valuable estates in Bohemia 
and elsewhere, he was made a prince of the Empire in 1623, and 
duke of Krumau in 1625. 

See H. von Zwiedineck-Siidenhorst, Hans Ulrich, Fiirst von 
Eggenberg (Vienna, 1880) ; and F. Mares, Beitrdge zur Geschichte 
der Beziehungen des Fiirsten J. U. von Eggenberg zu Kaiser Ferdinand 
II und zu Waldstein (Prague, 1 893). 

EGGER, EMILE (1813-1885), French scholar, was born in 
Paris on the 18th of July 1813. From 1840 till 1855 he was 
assistant professor, and from 1855 till his death professor of 
Greek literature in the Faculte des Lettres at Paris University. 
In 1854 he was elected a member of the Academie des Inscriptions 
and in 1873 of the Conseil superieur de l'instruction publique. He 
was a voluminous writer, a sound and discerning scholar, and his 
influence was largely responsible for the revival of the study of 
classical philology in France. His most important works were 
Essai sur I'histoire de la critique chez les Grecs (1849), Notions 
iUmentaires de grammaire comparee (1852), Apollonius Dyscole, 
essai sur I'histoire des theories grammalicales dans I'antiquite (1854) , 
Memoires de litterature ancienne (1862), MSmoires d'histoire 
ancienne et de philologie (1863), Les Papyrus grecs du Musie du 
Louvre et de la Bibliotheque Imperiale (1865), Etudes sur les 
traiUs publics chez les Grecs et les Romains (1866), L'Hellenisme en 
France (1869), La Litterature grecque (1890). He was also the 
author of Observations et reflexions sur le dtveloppement de I'in- 
telligence et du langage chez les enfants (1879). Egger died in 
Paris on the 1st of September 1885. 

EGGLESTON, EDWARD (1837-1902), American novelist and 
historian, was born in Vevay, Indiana, on the 10th of December 
1837, of Virginia stock. Delicate health, by which he was more 
or less handicapped throughout his life, prevented his going to 
college, but he was naturally a diligent student. He was a 
Methodist circuit rider and pastor in Indiana and Minnesota 
(1857-1866); associate editor (1866-1867) of The Little Corporal, 
Chicago ; editor of The National Sunday School Teacher, Chicago 
(1867 -1870); literary editor and later editor-in-chief of The 
Independent, New York (1870-1871); and editor of Hearth and 
Home in 1871-1872. He was pastor of the church of Christian 
Endeavour, Brooklyn, in 1874-1879. From 1880 until his death 
on the 2nd of September 1902, at his home on Lake George, New 
York, he devoted himself to literary work. His fiction includes 
Mr Blake's Walking Stick (1869), for children; The Hoosier 
Schoolmaster (1871); The End of the World (1872); The Mystery 
of Metro polisville (1873); The Circuit Rider (1874); Roxy 
(1878); The Hoosier Schoolboy (1883); The Book of Queer 
Stories (1884), for children; The Gray sons (1888), an excellent 
novel; The Faith Doctor (1891); and Duffels (1893), short 
stories. Most of his stories portray the pioneer manners and 
dialect of the Central West, and the Hoosier Schoolmaster was one 
of the first examples of American local realistic fiction; it was very 
popular, and was translated into French, German and Danish. 
During the last third of his life Eggleston laboured on a History of 
Life in the United States, but he lived to finish only two volumes — 
The Beginners of a Nation (1896) and The Transit of Civilization 
(1900). In addition he wrote several popular compendiums of 
American history for schools and homes. 

See G. C. Eggleston, The First of the Hoosiers (Philadelphia, 1903), 
and Meredith Nicholson, The Hoosiers (1900). 

His brother George Cary Eggleston (1839- ), American 
journalist and author, served in the Confederate army; was 
managing editor and later editor-in-chief of Hearth and Home 
(1871-1874); was literary editor of the New York Evening Post 
(1875-1881), literary editor and afterwards editor-in-chief of the 
New York Commercial Advertiser (1884-1889), and editorial writer 
for The World (New York) from 1889 to 1900. Most of his books 
are stories for boys; others, and his best, are romances dealing 
with life in the South especially in the Virginias and the 
Carolinas — before and during the Civil War. Among his publi- 
cations may be mentioned: A Rebel's Recollections (1874); 

The Last of the Flalboats (1900) ; Camp Venture (1900) ; A Carolina 
Cavalier (1901); Dorothy South (1902); The Master of Warlock 
(1903) ; Evelyn Byrd (1904) ; A Daughter of the South (1905) ; Blind 
Alleys (1906) ; Love is the Sum of it all (1907) ; History of the Con- 
federate War (1910); and Recollections of a Varied Life (1910). 

EGHAM, a town in the Chertsey parliamentary division of 
Surrey, England, on the Thames, 21m. W.S.W. of London by the 
London & South Western railway. Pop. (1901) 11,895. The 
church of St John the Baptist is a reconstruction of 1817; it 
contains monuments by John Flaxman. Above the right bank of 
the river a low elevation, Cooper's Hill, commands fine views over 
the valley, and over Windsor Great Park to the west. On the 
hill was the Royal Indian Civil Engineering College, commonly 
called Cooper's Hill College, of which Sir George Tomkyns 
Chesney was the originator and first president (1871). It 
educated men for the public works, accounts, railways and 
telegraph departments of India, and included a school of forestry; 
but it was decided, in the face of some opposition, to close it in 
1906, on the theory that it was unnecessary for a college with 
such a specialized object to be maintained by the government, in 
view of the readiness with which servants for these departments 
could be recruited elsewhere. Part of the organization, including 
the school of forestry, was transferred to Oxford University.. 
Cooper's Hill gives name to a famous poem of Sir John Denham 
(1642). A large and handsome building houses the Royal 
Holloway College for Women (1886), founded by Thomas 
Hollo way; in the neighbourhood is the sanatorium of the same 
founder (1885) for the treatment of mental ailments, accommo- 
dating about 2 50 patients. The college for women, surrounded by 
extensive grounds, commands a wide view from the wooded slope 
on which it stands. The recreation hall, with its fine art collec- 
tion, is the most notable room in this handsome building, which 
can receive 2 50 students. Within the parish, bordering the river, 
is the field of Runnymede, which, with Magna Charta Island 
lying off it, is famous in connexion with the signature of the 
charter by King John. Virginia Water, a large and picturesque 
artificial lake to the south of Windsor Great Park, is much 
frequented by visitors. It was formed under the direction of the 
duke of Cumberland, about 1750, and was the work of the 
brothers Thomas and Paul Sandby. 

EGIN (Armenian Agn, " the spring "), an important town in 
the Mamuret el- Aziz vilayet of Asiatic Turkey (altitude 3300 ft.). 
Pop. about 20,000, fairly equally divided between Armenian 
Christians and Moslems. It is picturesquely situated in a theatre 
of lofty, abrupt rocks, on the right bank of the western Euphrates, 
which is crossed by a wooden bridge. The stone houses stand in 
terraced gardens and orchards, and the streets are mere rock 
ladders. Egin was settled by Armenians who emigrated from 
Van in the nth century with Senekherim. On the 8th of 
November 1895 and in the summer of 1896 many Armenians were 
massacred here. (D. G. H.) 

EGLANTINE (E. Frisian, egelliere; Fr. aiglantier), a plant- 
name of which Dr R. C. A. Prior (Popular Names of British 
Plants, p. 70) says that it " has been the subject of much dis- 
cussion, both as to its exact meaning and as to the shrub to 
which it properly belongs." The eglantine of the herbalists was 
the sweet-brier, Rosa rubiginosa. The signification of the word 
seems to be thorn-tree or thorn-bush, the first two syllables 
probably representing the Anglo-Saxon egla, egle, a prick or thorn, 
while the termination is the Dutch tere, taere, a tree. Eglantine is 
frequently alluded to in the writings of English poets, from 
Chaucer downwards. Milton, in L' Allegro, is thought by the 
term " twisted eglantine " to denote the honeysuckle, Lonicera 
Periclymenum, which is still known as eglantine in north-east 

EGLINTON, EARLS OF. The title of earl of Eglinton has been 
held by the famous Scottish family of Montgomerie since 1508. 
The attempts made to trace the descent of this house to Roger of 
Montgomery, earl of Shrewsbury (d. 1094), one of William the 
Conqueror's followers, will not bear examination, and the sure 
pedigree of the family only begins with Sir John Montgomerie, 
lord of Eaglesham, who fought at the battle of Otterbourne in 



i 88 and died about 1398. His grandson, Sir Alexander Mont- 
gomTie (d. c. 1460), was made a lord of the Scottish parliament 
about 1445 as Lord Montgomerie, and Sir Alexander's great- 
grandson Hugh, the 3rd lord (c. 1460-1545), was created earl of 
Eglinton, or Eglintoun, in 1508. Hugh, who was a person of 
importance during the minority of James V., was succeeded by 
his grandson Hugh (d. 1546), and then by the latter's son Hugh 
(c. 1 53 1-1585) , who became 3rd earl of Eglinton. This nobleman 
was a firm supporter of Mary queen of Scots, for whom he fought 
at Langside, and of the Roman Catholic Church; his son and 
successor,"Hugh,was murdered in April 1 586 by the Cunninghams, 
a family with which his own had an hereditary blood feud. In 
161 2, by the death of Hugh, the 5th earl, the male line of the 
Montgomeries became extinct. 

Having no children Earl Hugh had settled his title and estates 
on his cousin, Sir Alexander Seton of Foulstruther (1588-1661), a 
younger son of Robert Seton, 1st earl of Wintoun (c. 1550-1603), 
and his wife Margaret, daughter of the 3rd earl of Eglinton. 
Alexander, who thus became the 6th earl of Eglinton and took the 
name of Montgomerie, was commonly called Greysteel; he was a 
prominent Covenanter and fought against Charles I. at Marston 
Moor. Later, however, he supported the cause of Charles II. , and 
• fell into the hands of Cromwell, who imprisoned him. His fifth 
son, Robert Montgomerie (d. 1684) , a soldier of distinction, fought 
against Cromwell at Dunbar and at Worcester, afterwards 
escaping from the Tower of London and serving in Denmark. 
Robert's elder brother, Hugh, 7th earl of Eglinton (1613-1660), 
who also fought against Cromwell, was the grandfather of 
Alexander, the 9th earl (c. 1660-17 29), wno married, for his third 
wife, Susannah (1689-1780), daughter of Sir Archibald Kennedy, 
Bart., of Culzean, a lady celebrated for her wit and beauty. 
Alexander, the 10th earl (1723-1769), a son of the 9th earl, was 
one of the first of the Scottish landowners to carry out improve- 
ments on his estates. He was shot near Ardrossan by an excise 
officer named Mungo Campbell on the 24th of October 1769. 
His brother and successor, Archibald, the nth earl (1726-1796), 
raised a regiment of Highlanders with which he served in America 
during the Seven Years' War. As he left no male issue he was 
succeeded in the earldom by his kinsman Hugh Montgomerie 
(1739-1819), a descendant of the 6th earl, who was created a peer 
of the United Kingdom as Baron Ardrossan in 1806. Before 
succeeding to the earldom Hugh had served in the American war 
and had been a member of parliament ; after this event he began 
to rebuild Eglinton castle on a magnificent scale and to construct 
a harbour at Ardrossan. 

This earl's successor was his grandson, Archibald William, the 
13th earl (1812-1861), who was born at Palermo in the 29th of 
September 1812. His father was Archibald, Lord Montgomerie 
(1773-1814), the eldest son of the 12th earl, and his mother was 
Mary (d. 1848), a daughter of the nth earl. Educated at Eton, 
the young earl's main object of interest for some years was the 
turf; he kept a large racing stud and won success and reputation 
in the sporting world. In 1839 his name became more widely 
known in connexion with the famous tournament which took 
place at Eglinton castle and is said to have cost him £30,000 or 
£40,000. This was made the subject of much ridicule and was 
partly spoiled by the unfavourable weather, the rain falling in 
torrents. Yet it was a real tournament and the " knights " 
broke their spears in the orthodox way. Prince Louis Napoleon 
(Napoleon III.) took part in it, and Lady Seymour, a daughter of 
Thomas Sheridan and the wife of Lord Seymour, afterwards 12th 
duke of Somerset, was the queen of beauty. A list of the 
challengers with an account of the jousts and the melee will be 
found in the volume on the tournament written by John 
Richardson, with drawings by J. H. Nixon. It is also described 
by Disraeli in Endymion. Eglinton was a staunch Tory, and in 
February 1852 he became lord-lieutenant of Ireland under the 
earl of Derby. He retired with the ministry in the following 
December, having by his princely hospitality made himself one of 
the most popular of Irish viceroys. When Derby returned to 
office in February 1858 he was again appointed lord-lieutenant, 
and he discharged the duties of this post until June 1859. In this 

year he was created earl of Winton, an earldom which had been 
held by his kinsfolk, the Setons, from 1600 until 1716, when 
George Seton, the 5th earl (c. 1678-1749), was deprived of his 
honours for high treason. The earl died on the 4th of October 
1861, and was succeeded by his eldest son Archibald William 
(1841-1892). When this earl died in 1892 his younger brother 
George Arnulph (b. 1848) became 15th earl of Eglinton and 
3rd earl of Winton. 

See Sir W. Fraser, Memorials of the Montgomeries, earls of Eglinton 

EGMONT, EARLS OF. John Perceval, 1st earl of Egmont 
(1683-1748), Irish politician, and partner with J. E. Oglethorpe 
in founding the American colony of Georgia, was created earl 
in 1733. He claimed descent from the Egmonts of Flanders, 
but his title was taken from the place in County Cork where 
the family residence stood. Its name of Burton House, and that 
of Burton manor which formed part of the family estates, were 
a reminiscence of Burton in Somerset, where was the earlier 
English family property of his great-great-grandfather Richard 
Perceval (1 550-1620), Burghley's secret agent, and author of a 
Spanish dictionary published in 1591, whose son Sir Philip 
Perceval (1605-1647) acquired the Irish estates by judicious 
use of his opportunities as commissioner for land titles and of his 
interest at court. Sir Philip's son John, grandfather of the 1st 
earl, was made a baronet in 1661. The first earl of Egmont 
(who had been made Baron Perceval in 1715, and Viscount 
Perceval in 1723) is chiefly important for his connexion with 
the colonization of Georgia, and for his voluminous letters and 
writings on biography and genealogy. 

John Perceval, 2nd earl of Egmont (1711-1770), his eldest 
son, was an active politician, first lord of the admiralty (1763- 
1766), and political pamphleteer, and like his father an ardent 
genealogist. He was twice married, and had eight sons and eight 
daughters. One of his younger sons was Spencer Perceval, 
prime minister of England. His eldest son succeeded as 3rd earl, 
and the eldest by his second marriage (with Catherine Compton, 
baroness of Arden in Ireland) was in 1802 created Baron Arden 
of the United Kingdom, a title which subsequently became 
merged in the Egmont earldom. 

EGMONT (Egmond), LAMORAL, Count or, prince of 
Gavre (1522-1568), was born in Hainaut in 1522. He was the 
younger of the two sons of John IV., count of Egmont, by his 
wife Francoise of Luxemburg, princess of Gavre. On the death 
of his elder brother Charles, about 1541, he succeeded to his 
titles and estates. In this year he served his apprenticeship as 
a soldier in the expedition of the emperor Charles V. to Algiers, 
distinguishing himself in the command of a body of cavalry. 
In 1544 he married Sabina, sister of the elector palatine 
Frederick III., and the wedding was celebrated at Spires with, 
great pomp in the presence of the emperor and his brother Y&rdi- 
nand, afterwards emperor. Created knight of the GolfkffFleece 
in 1546, he accompanied Philip of Spain in his tour through the 
Netherlarid towns, and in 1554 he went to England at the head 
of a special embassy to ask the hand of Mary of England for 
Philip, and was afterwards present at the wedding ceremony 
at Winchester. In the summer of 1557 Egmont was appointed 
commander of the Flemish cavalry in the war between Spain 
and France; and it was by his vehement persuasion that the 
battle of St Quentin was fought. The victory was determined 
by the brilliant charge that he led against the French. The 
reputation which he won at St Quentin was raised still higher 
in 1 558, when he encountered the French army under de Thermes 
at Gravelines, on its march homewards after the invasion of 
Flanders, totally defeated it, and took Marshal de Thermes 
prisoner. The battle was fought against the advice of the duke 
of Alva, and the victory made Alva Egmont's enemy. But 
the count now became the idol of his countrymen, who looked 
upon him as the saviour of Flanders from the devastations of 
the French. He was nominated by Philip stadtholder of Flanders 
and Artois. At the conclusion of the war by the treaty of 
Cateau Cambresis, Egmont was one of the four hostages selected 
by the king of France as pledges for its execution. 



The attempt made by King Philip to convert the Netherlands 
into a Spanish dependency and to govern it by Spanish ministers 
excited the resentment of Egmont and other leading members 
of the Netherlands aristocracy. Between him and Cardinal 
Granvella, the all-powerful minister of the regent Margaret of 
Parma, there was no love lost. As a member of the council of 
state Egmont joined the prince of Orange in a vigorous protest 
addressed to Philip (1561) against the autocratic proceedings 
of the minister; and two years later he again protested in 
conjunction with the prince of Orange and Count Horn. In the 
spring of 1 564 Granvella left the Netherlands, and the malcontent 
nobles once more took their places in the council of state. The 
resolve, however, of Philip to enforce the decrees of the council 
of Trent throughout the Netherlands once more aroused their 
resentment. Although himself a good Catholic, Egmont had 
no wish to see the Spanish Inquisition established in his native 
country. Orange, Egmont and others were convinced that the 
enforcement of the decrees in the Netherlands was impossible, 
and, in January 1665, Egmont accepted a special mission to 
Spain to make known to Philip the state of affairs and the 
disposition of the people. At Madrid the king gave him an 
ostentatiously cordial reception, and all the courtiers vied with 
one another in lavishing professions of respect upon him. They 
knew his vain and somewhat unstable character, and hoped to 
win him over without conceding anything to the wishes of the 
Netherlanders. The king gave him plenty of flatteries and 
promises, but steadily evaded any serious discussion of the 
object of his mission, and Egmont finally returned home without 
having accomplished anything. At the same time Philip sent 
further instructions to the regent to abate nothing of the severity 
of the persecution. 

Egmont was naturally indignant at the treatment he had 
received, while the terrors of the Inquisition were steadily 
rousing the people to a state of frenzied excitement. In 1566 
a confederacy of the lesser nobility was formed (Les Gueux) 
whose principles were set out in a document known as the 
Compromise. From this league Egmont held aloof; he declined 
to take any step savouring of actual disloyalty to his sovereign. 
He withdrew to his government of Flanders, and as stadtholder 
took active measures for the persecution of heretics. But in the 
eyes of Philip he had long been a marked man. The Spanish 
king had temporized only until the moment arrived when he 
could crush opposition by force. In the summer of 1567 the 
duke of Alva was despatched to the Netherlands at the head of 
an army of veterans to supersede the regent Margaret and 
restore order in the discontented provinces. Orange fled to 
Germany after having vainly warned Egmont and Horn of the 
dangers that threatened them. Alva was at pains to lull their 
suspicions, and then suddenly seized them both and threw them 
in the castle of Ghent. Their trial was a farce, for their fate had 
already been determined before Alva left Spain. After some 
months of imprisonment they were removed to Brussels, where 
sentence was pronounced upon them (June 4) by the infamous 
Council of Blood erected by Alva. They were condemned to 
death for high treason. It was in vain that the most earnest 
intercessions were made in behalf of Egmont by the emperor 
Maximilian, by the knights of the order of the Golden Fleece, 
by the states of Brabant, and by several of the German princes. 
Vain, too, was the pathetic pleading of his wife, who with her 
eleven children was reduced to want, and had taken refuge in 
a convent. Egmont was beheaded at Brussels in the square 
before the town hall on the day after his sentence had been 
publicly pronounced (June 5, 1568). He met his fate with calm 
resignation; and in the storm of terror and exasperation to 
which this tragedy gave rise Egmont's failings were forgotten, 
and he and his fellow-victim to Spanish tyranny were glorified 
in the popular imagination as martyrs of Flemish freedom. 
From this memorable event, which Goethe made the theme of 
his play Egmont (1788), is usually dated the beginning of the 
famous revolt of the Netherlands. In 1865 a monument to 
Counts Egmont and Horn, by Fraiken, was erected on the spot 
where they were beheaded. 

Bibliography. — T. Juste, Le Comte d' Egmont el le comle de Homes 
(Brussels, 1862), Les Pays-Bas sous Philippe II, 1555-1565 (2 vols., 
Brussels, 1855); J. L. Motley, Rise of the Dutch Republic, 1555-1^84 
(3 vols., London, 1856); J. P. Blok, History of the People of the 
Netherlands (tr. from Dutch), vol. iii. (New York, 1900); R. Fruin, 
Het voorspel van den tastigjarigen oorlag (Amsterdam, 1866) ; E. 
Marx, Siudien zur Geschichte des niederldndischen Aufstandes 
(Leipzig, 1902). (G. E.) 

EGOISM (from Gr. and Lat. ego, I, the 1st personal pronoun), 
a modern philosophical term used generally, in opposition to 
" Altruism," for any ethical system in which the happiness or 
the good of the individual is the main criterion of moral action. 
Another form of the word, " Egotism," is really interchangeable, 
though in ordinary language it is often used specially (and 
similarly " egoism," as in George Meredith's Egoist) to describe 
the habit of magnifying one's self and one's achievements, or 
regarding all things from a selfish point of view. Both these 
ideas derive from the original meaning of ego, myself, as opposed 
to everything which is outside myself. This antithesis of ego 
and non-ego, self and not-self, may be understood in several 
senses according to the connexion in which it is used. Thus the 
self may be held to include one's family, property, business, and 
an indefinitely wider range of persons or objects in which the 
individual's interest is for the moment centred, i.e.. everything 
which I can call " mine." In this, its widest, sense " a man's Self 
is the sum total of all that he can call his " (Wrn. James, Principles 
of Psychology, chap x.). This self may be divided up in many 
ways according to the various forms in which it may be expressed. 
Thus James (ibid.) classifies the various " selves " as the material, 
the spiritual, the social and the " pure." Or again the self may 
be narrowed down to a man's own person, consisting of an 
individual mind and body. In the true philosophical sense, 
however, the conception of the ego is still further narrowed down 
to the individual consciousness as opposed to all that is outside 
it, i.e. can be its object. This conception of the self belongs 
mainly to metaphysics and involves the whole problem of the 
relation between subject and object, the nature of reality, and 
the possibility of knowledge of self and of object. The ordinary 
idea of the self as a physical entity, obviously separate from 
others, takes no account of the problem as to how and in what 
sense the individual is conscious of himself; what is the relation 
between subject and object in the phenomenon of self-conscious- 
ness, in which the mind reflects upon itself both past and present ? 
The mind is in this case both subject and object, or, as William 
James puts it, both " I " and " me." The phenomenon has been 
described in various ways by different thinkers. Thus Kant 
distinguished the two selves as rational and empirical, just as 
he distinguished the two egos as the noumenal or real and the 
phenomenal from the metaphysical standpoint. A similar 
distinction is made by Herbart. Others have held that the self 
has a complex content, the subject self being, as it were, a fuller 
expression of the object-self (so Bradley) ; or again the subject 
self is the active content of the mind, and the object self the 
passive content which for the moment is exciting the attention. 
The most satisfactory and also the most general view is that 
consciousness is complex and unanalysable. 

The relation of the self to the not-self need not to be treated 
here (see Metaphysics). It may, however, be pointed out that 
in so far as an object is cognized by the mind, it becomes in a sense 
part of the complex self-content. In this sense the individual 
is in himself his own universe, his whole existence being, in other 
words, the sum total of his psychic relations, and nothing else 
being for him in existence at all. A similar idea is prominent in 
many philosophico-religious systems wherein the idea of God 
or the Infinite is, as it were, the union of the ego and the non-ego, 
of subject and object. The self of man is regarded as having 
limitations, whereas the Godhead is infinite and all-inclusive. 
In many mystical Oriental religions the perfection of the human 
self is absorption in the infinite, as a ripple dies away on the 
surface of water. The problems of the self may be summed up 
as follows. The psychologist investigates the ideal construction 
of the self, i.e. the way in which the conception of the self arises, 
the different aspects or contents of the self and the relation of 




the subject to the object self. At this point the epistemologist 
takes up the question of empirical knowledge and considers 
the kind of validity, if any, which it can possess. What existence 
has the known object for the knowing subject ? The result of 
this inquiry is generally intellectual scepticism in a greater or 
less degree, namely, that the object has no existence for the 
knower except a relative one, i.e. in so far as it is " known " 
(see Relativity of Knowledge). Finally the metaphysician, 
and in another sphere the theologian, consider the nature of the 
pure or transcendental self apart from its relations, i.e. the 
absolute self. 

In ethics, egoistic doctrines disregard the ultimate problems 
of selfhood, and assume the self to consist of a man's person and 
those things in which he is or ought to be directly interested. 
The general statement that such doctrines refer all moral action 
to criteria of the individual's happiness, preservation, moral per- 
fection, raises an obvious difficulty. Egoism merely asserts that 
the self is all-important in the application of moral principles, 
and does not in any way supply the material of these principles. 
It is a purely formal direction, and as such merely an adjunct 
to a substantive ethical criterion. A practical theory of ethics 
seeks to establish a particular moral ideal; if it is an absolute 
criterion, then the altruist would place first the attainment 
of that ideal by others, while the egoist would seek it for himself. 
The same is true of ethical theories which may be described as 
material. Of the second type are those, e.g. of Hobbes and 
Spinoza, which advocate self-preservation as the ideal, as con- 
trasted with modern evolutionist moralists who advocate race- 
preservation. Again, we may contrast the early Greek hedonists, 
who bade each man seek the greatest happiness (of whatever 
kind), with modern utilitarian and social hedonists, who prefer 
the greatest good or the greatest happiness of the greatest 
number. It is with hedonistic and other empirical theories 
that egoism is generally associated. As a matter of fact, however, 
egoism has been no less prominent in intuitional ethics. Thus 
the man who seeks only or primarily his own moral perfection 
is an egoist par excellence. Such are ascetics, hermits and the 
like, whose whole object is the realization of their highest 

The distinction of egoistical and altruistic action is further 
complicated by two facts. In the first place, many systems 
combine the two. Thus Christian ethics may be said to insist 
equally on duty to self and duty to others, while crudely egoistic 
systems become unworkable if a man renders himself obnoxious 
to his fellows. On the other hand, every deliberate action based 
on an avowedly altruistic principle necessarily has a reference 
to the agent; if it is right that A should do a certain action for the 
benefit of B, then it tends to the moral self-realization of A that 
he should do it. Upon whatsoever principle the Tightness of an 
action depends, its performance is right for the agent. The self- 
reference is inevitable in every action in so far as it is regarded 
as voluntary and chosen as being of a particular moral quality. 

It is this latter fact which has led many students of human 
character to state that men do in fact aim at the gratification 
of their personal desires and impulses. The laws of the state 
and the various rules of conduct laid down by religion or morality 
are merely devices adopted for general convenience. The most 
remarkable statement of this point of view is that of Friedrich 
Nietzsche, who went so far as to denounce all forms of self-denial 
as cowardice: — let every one who is strong seek to make himself 
dominant at the expense of the weak. 

EGORIEVSK, a town of Russia, in the government of Ryazan, 
70 m. by rail E.S.E. of Moscow, by a branch line (15 m.) connect- 
ing with the Moscow to Ryazan main line. The cotton mills and 
other factories give occupation to 6000 persons. Egorievsk 
has important fairs for grain, hides, &c, which are exported. 
Pop. (1897) 23,932. 

EGREMONT, EARLS OF. In 1749 Algernon Seymour, 7th 
duke of Somerset, was created earl of Egremont, and on his 
childless death in February 1750 this title passed by special 
remainder to his nephew, Sir Charles Wyndham or Windham, 
Bart. (1710-1763), a son of Sir William Wyndham of Orchard 

Wyndham, Somerset. Charles, who had succeeded to his 
father's baronetcy in 1740, inherited Somerset's estates in 
Cumberland and Sussex. Jle was a member of parliament from 
1734 to 1750, and in October 1761 he was appointed secretary 
of state for the southern department in succession to William 
Pitt. His term of office, during which he acted in concert with 
his brother-in-law, George Grenville, was mainly occupied with 
the declaration of war on Spain and with the negotiations for 
peace with France and Spain, a peace the terms of which the 
earl seems to have disliked. He was also to the fore during the 
proceedings against Wilkes, and he died on the 21st of August 
1763. Horace Walpole perhaps rates Egremont's talents too 
low when he says he " had neither knowledge of business, nor 
the smallest share of parliamentary abilities." 

The 2nd earl's son and successor, George O'Brien Wyndham 
(1751-1837), was more famous as a patron of art and an agricul- 
turist than as a politician, although he was not entirely indifferent 
to politics. For some time the painter Turner lived at his 
Sussex residence, Petworth House, and in addition to Turner, the 
painter Leslie, the sculptor Flaxman and other talented artists 
received commissions from Egremont, who filled his house with 
valuable works of art. Generous and hospitable, blunt and 
eccentric, the earl was in his day a very prominent figure in 
English society. Charles Greville says, " he was immensely rich 
and his munificence was equal to his wealth "; and again that in 
his time Petworth was " like a great inn." The earl died un- 
married on the nth of November 1837, and on the death of 
his nephew and successor, George Francis Wyndham, the 4th 
earl (1785-1845), the earldom of Egremont became extinct. 
Petworth, however, and the large estates had already passed 
to George Wyndham (1 787-1869), a natural son of the 3rd earl, 
who was created Baron Leconfield in 1859. 

EGREMONT, a market town in the Egremont parliamentary 
division of Cumberland, England, 5 m. S.S.E. of Whitehaven, 
on a joint line of the London & North Western and Furness 
railways. Pop. of urban district (1901) 5761. It is pleasantly 
situated in the valley of the Ehen. Ruins of a castle command 
the town from an eminence. It was founded c. n 20 by William 
de Meschines; it is moated, and retains a Norman doorway 
and some of the original masonry, as well as fragments of later 
date. The church of St Mary is a modern reconstruction em- 
bodying some of the Norman features of the old church. Iron 
ore and limestone are raised in the neighbourhood. 

It seems impossible to find any history for Egremont until 
after the Norman Conquest, when Henry I. gave the barony of 
Coupland to William de Meschines, who erected a castle at 
Egremont around which the town grew into importance. The 
barony afterwards passed by marriage to the families of Lucy 
and Multon, and finally came to the Percys, earls of Northumber- 
land, from whom are descended the present lords of the manor 
of Egremont, The earliest evidence that Egremont was a 
borough occurs in a charter, granted by Richard de Lucy in the 
reign of King John, which gave the burgesses right to choose 
their reeve, and set out the customs owing to the lord of the 
manor, among which was that, of providing twelve armed men 
at his castle in the time of war. The borough was represented 
by two members in the parliament of 1 295, but in the following 
year was disfranchised, on the petition of the burgesses, on 
account of the expense of sending members. In 1267 Henry III. 
granted Thomas de Multon a market every Wednesday at 
Egremont, and a fair every year on the eve, day and morrow 
of the Nativity of the Virgin Mary. In the Quo Warranto rolls 
he is found to have claimed by prescription another weekly 
market on Saturday. The market rights were purchased from 
Lord Leconfield in 1885, and the market on Saturday is still 
held. Richard de Lucy's charter shows that dyeing, weaving 
and fulling were carried on in the town in his time. 

EGRESS (Lat. egressus, going out), in astronomy, the end of the 
apparent transit of a small body over the disk of a larger one; 
especially of a transit of a satellite of Jupiter over the disk of 
that planet. It designates the moment at which the smaller 
body is seen to leave the limb of the other. 




EGYPT, a country forming the N.E. extremity of Africa. 1 
In the following account a division is made into (I.) Modem 
Egypt, and (II.) Ancient Egypt; but the history from the earliest 
times is given as a separate section (III.). 

Section I. includes Geography, Economics, Government, Inhabi- 
tants, Finance and Army. Section II. is subdivided into: — (A) 
Exploration and Research; (B) The Country in Ancient Times; 
(C) Religion; (D) Language and Writing; (E) Art and Archae- 
ology; (F) Chronology. Section III. is divided into three main 
periods: — (i) Ancient History; (2) the Mahommedan Period; (3) 
Modern History (from Mehemet Ali). 

I. Modern Egypt 

Boundaries and Areas. — Egypt is bounded N. by the Mediter- 
ranean, S. by the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan, N.E. by Palestine, 
E. by the Red Sea, W. by Tripoli and the Sahara. The western 
frontier is ill-defined. The boundary line between Tripoli and 
Egypt is usually taken to start from a point in the Gulf of 
Solium and to run S. by E. so as to leave the oasis of Siwa to 
Egypt. South of Siwa the frontier, according to the Turkish 
firman of 1841, bends eastward, approaching the cultivated 
Nile-land near Wadi Haifa, i.e. the southern frontier. This 
southern frontier is fixed by agreement between Great Britain 
and Egypt at the 22 N. The N.E. frontier is an almost direct 
line drawn from Taba, near the head of the Gulf of Akaba, the 
eastern of the two gulfs into which the Red Sea divides, to the 
Mediterranean at Rafa in 34 15' E. The peninsula of Sinai, 
geographically part of Asia, is thus included in the Egyptian 
dominions. The total area of the country is about 400,000 
sq. m., or more than three times the size of the British Isles. Of 
this area rfths is desert. Canals, roads, date plantations, &c, 
cover 1900 sq. m.; 2850 sq. m. are comprised in the surface of 
the Nile, marshes, lakes, &c. A line corresponding with the 
30 N., drawn just S. of Cairo, divides the country into Lower 
and Upper Egypt, natural designations in common use, Lower 
Egypt being the Delta and Upper Egypt the Nile valley. By 
the Arabs Lower Egypt is called Er-Rif , the cultivated or fertile ; 
Upper Egypt Es Sa'id, the happy or fortunate. Another 
division of the country is into Lower, Middle and Upper Egypt, 
Middle Egypt in this classification being the district between 
Cairo and Assiut. 

General Character. — The distinguishing features of Egypt are 
the Nile and the desert. But for the river there would be nothing 
to differentiate the country from other parts of the Sahara. 
The Nile, however, has transformed the land through which it 
passes. Piercing the desert, and at its annual overflow depositing 
rich sediment brought from the Abyssinian highlands, the river 
has created the Delta and the fertile strip in Upper Egypt. This 
cultivable land is Egypt proper ; to it alone is applicable the 
ancient name — " the black land." The Misr of the Arabs is 
restricted to the same territory. Beyond the Nile valley east 
and west stretch great deserts, containing here and there fertile 
oases. The general appearance of the country is remarkably 
uniform. The Delta is a level plain, richly cultivated, and 
varied alone by the lofty dark-brown mounds of ancient cities, 
and the villages set in groves of palm-trees, standing on mounds 
often, if not always, ancient. Groves of palm-trees are 
occasionally seen besides those around the villages, but other 
trees are rare. In Upper Egypt the Nile valley is very narrow 
and is bounded by mountains of no great height. They form 
the edge of the desert on either side of the valley, of which the 
bottom is level rock. The mountains rarely take the form of 
peaks. Sometimes they approach the river in bold promontories, 
and at others are divided by the dry beds of ancient water- 
courses. The bright green of the fields, the reddish-brown or 
dull green of the great river, contrasting with the bare yellow 
rocks, seen beneath a brilliant sun and a deep-blue sky, present 
views of great beauty. In form the landscape varies little and 
is not remarkable; in colour its qualities are always splendid, 
and under a general uniformity show a continual variety. 

1 By the Greek and Roman geographers Egypt was usually 
assigned to Libya (Africa), but by some early writers the Nile was 
thought to mark the division between Libya and Asia. The name 
occurs in Homer as Myvirros, but is of doubtful origin. 

The Coast Region. — Egypt has a coast-line of over 600 m. on the 
Mediterranean and about 1200 m. on the Red Sea. The Mediter- 
ranean coast extends from the Gulf of Solium on the west to Rafa on 
the east. From the gulf to the beginning of the Delta the coast is 
rock-bound, but slightly indented, and possesses no good harbourage. 
The cliffs attain in places a height of 1000 ft. They are the ter- 
mination of a stony plateau, containing several small oases, which 
southward joins the more arid and uninhabitable wastes of the 
Libyan Desert. The Delta coast-line, composed of sandhills and, 
occasionally, limestone rocks, is low, with cape-like projections at 
the Nile mouths formed by the river silt. Two bays are thus formed, 
the western being the famous Bay of Aboukir. It is bounded W. 
by a point near the ancient Canopic mouth, eastward by the Rosetta 
mouth. Beyond the Delta eastward the coast is again barren and 
without harbours. It rises gradually southward, merging into the 
plateau of the Sinai peninsula. The Red Sea coast is everywhere 
mountainous. The mountains are the northern continuation of the 
Abyssinian table-land, and some of the peaks are over 6000 ft. above 
the sea. The highest peaks, going from north to south, are Jebels 
Gharib, Dukhan, Es Shayib, Fatira, Abu Tiur, Zubara and Ham- 
mada (Hamata). The coast has a general N.N.W. and S.S.E. trend, 
and, save for the two gulfs into which it is divided by the massif of 
Sinai, is not deeply indented. Where the frontier between Egypt 
and the Sudan reaches the sea is Ras Elba (see further Fed Sea). 

The Nile Valley (see also Nile). — Entering Egypt proper, a 
little north of the Second Cataract, the Nile flows through a valley 
in sandstone beds of Cretaceous age as far as 25° N., and throughout 
this part of its course the valley is extremely narrow, rarely exceed- 
ing 2 m. in width. At two points, namely, Kalabsha — the valley 
here being only 170 yds. wide and the river over 100 ft. deep- — and 
Assuan (First Cataract), the course of the river is interrupted by 
outcrops of granites and other crystalline rocks, which have been 
uncovered by the erosion of the overlying sandstone, and to-day form 
the mass of islands, with numerous small rapids, which are described 
not very accurately as cataracts ; no good evidence exists in support 
of the view that they are the remains of a massive barrier, broken 
down and carried away by some sudden convulsion. From 25 N. 
northwards for 518 m. the valley is of the " rift-valley " type, a level 
depression in a limestone plateau, enclosed usually by steep cliffs, 
except where the tributary valleys drained into the main valley in 
early times, when there was a larger rainfall, and now carry off the 
occasional rainstorms that burst on the desert. The cliffs are highest 
between Esna and Kena, where they reach 1800 ft. above sea-level. 
The average width of the cultivated land is about 10 m., of which 
the greater part lies on the left (western) bank of the river; and 
outside this is a belt, varying from a few hundred yards to 3 or 4 m., 
of stony and sandy ground, reaching up to the foot of the limestone 
cliffs, which rise in places to as much as 1000 ft. above the valley. 
This continues as far as 29 N., after which the hills that close in the 
valley become lower, and the higher plateaus lie at a distance of 
10 or 15 m. back in the desert. 

The Fayum. — The fertile province of the Fayum, west of the Nile 
and separated from it by some 6 m. of desert, seems to owe its exist- 
ence to movements similar to those which determined the valley 
itself. Lying in a basin sloping in a series of terraces from an altitude 
of 65 ft. above sea-level in the east to about 140 ft. below sea-level 
on the north-west, at the margin of the Birket-el-Kerun, this pro- 
vince is wholly irrigated by a canalized channel, the Bahr Yusuf, 
which, leaving the Nile at Derut esh Sherif in Upper Egypt, follows 
the western margin of the cultivation in the Nile valley, and at 
length enters the Fayum through a gap in the desert hills by the 
Xllth Dynasty pyramids of Lahun and Hawara (see Fayum). 

The Delta. — About 30 N., where the city of Cairo stands, the 
hills which have hitherto run parallel with the Nile turn W.N.W. 
and E.N.E., and the triangular area between them is wholly deltaic. 
The Delta measures 100 m. from S. to N., having a width of 155 m. 
on the shore of the Mediterranean between Alexandria on the west 
and Port Said on the east. The low sandy shore of the Delta, slowly 
increasing by the annual deposit of silt by the river, is mostly a 
barren area of sand-hills and salty waste land. This is the region 
of the lagoons and marshes immediately behind the coast-line. 
Southwards the quality of the soil rapidly improves, and becomes the 
most fertile part of Egypt. This area is watered by the Damietta 
and the Rosetta branches of the Nile, and by a network of canals. The 
soil of the Delta is a dark grey fine sandy soil, becoming at times 
almost a stiff clay by reason of the fineness of its particles, which 
consist almost wholly of extremely small grains of quartz with a few 
other minerals, and often numerous flakes of mica. This deposit 
varies in thickness, as a rule, from 55 to 70 ft., at which depth it is 
underlain by a series of coarse and fine yellow quartz sands, with 
occasional pebbles, or even banks of gravel, while here and there thin 
beds of clay occur. These sand-beds are sharply distinguished by 
their colour from the overlying Nile deposit, and are of considerable 
thickness. A boring made in 1886 for the Royal Society at Zagazig 
attained a depth of 375 ft. without reaching rock, and another, 
subsequently sunk near Lake Aboukir (close to Alexandria), reached 
a depth of 405 ft. with the same result. Numerous other borings to 
depths of 100 to 200 ft. have given similar results, showing the Nile 
deposit to rest generally on these yellow sands, which provide a 
constant though not a very large supply of good water; near the 



northern limits of the Delta this cannot, however, be depended on, 
since the well water at these depths has proved on several occasions 
to be salt. The surface of the Delta is a wide alluvial plain sloping 
gently towards the sea, and having an altitude of 29 ft. above it at 
its southern extremity. Its limits east and west are determined bv 
the higher ground of the deserts, to which the silt-laden waters of 
the Nile in flood time cannot reach. This silt consists largely of 
alumina (about 48 %) and calcium carbonate (18%) with smaller 
quantities of silica, oxide of iron and carbon. Although the Nile 
water is abundantly charged with alluvium, the annual deposit bv 
the river, except under extraordinary circumstances, is smaller than 
might be supposed. The mean ordinary rate of the increase of the 
soil of Egypt is calculated as about 4i in. in a century. 

lhe Lakes— The lagoons or lakes of the Delta, going from west 
to east, are Mareotis (Manut), Edku, Burlus and Menzala. The land 
separating them from the Mediterranean is nowhere more than 10 m. 
wide. East of the Damietta mouth of the Nile this strip is in places 
not more than 200 yds. broad. All the lakes are shallow and the 
water in them salt or brackish. Mareotis, which bounds Alexandria 
on the south side, 
varies considerably in 
area according to the 
rise or fall of the Nile ; 
when the Nile is low 
there is a wide expanse 
of marsh, when at its 
highest the lake covers 
about 100 sq. m. In 
ancient times Mareotis 
was navigable and was 
joined by various canals 
to the Nile. The coun- 
try around was culti- 
vated and produced the 
famous Mareotic wine. 
The canals being neg- 
lected, the lake de- 
creased in size, though 
it was still of consider- 
able area in the 15th 
and 16th centuries, and 
was then noted for the 
value of its fisheries. 
When the French army 
occupied Egypt in 1798, 
Mareotis was found to 
be largely a sandy plain. 
In April 1801 the British 
army besieging Alexan- 
dria cut through the 
land between Aboukir 
and the lake, admitting 
the waters of the sea 
into the ancient bed 
of Mareotis and laying 
under water a large 
area then in cultiva- 
tion. This precedent 


Z RHH h™ fs ed ' ^ by th e Turks in 1803 and a second time by 
the British in 1807. Mareotis has no outlet, and the water is kept 
lfft\ M *T m Y i n y meai F 0f P° werful P u mps which neutralize the 
fit i ^e Nile flood A western arm has been cut off from the 

fj? 7 t a ^ ke ' and ln - thls arm a thick crust °f salt is formed each 
year after the evaporation of the flood water. Near the shores of the 

M* JT- k ei ^ g !"° W •',", r r ich , Profusion. Like all the Delta lakes, 
Mareotis abounds in wild-fowl. North-east of Mareotis was Lake 
P»=, U ^f r Vt Sraa ". sheet ° f wate r, now dry, lying S.W. of Aboukir Bay. 
h-ast ot this reclaimed marsh and reaching to within 4 m. of the 
Rosetta branch of the Nile, lies Edku, 22 m. long and in places 16 
n? (+ P W Nn a " °r n ll S ' ? u PP° sed to be the ancient Canopic mouth 

o thP R« V nt °i. b °l lklr J Bay - Burlus b ' e S ins a Httle eastward 
ot the Kosetta channel, and stretches bow-shaped for 64 m. Its 

SSv m« h i S ab °f l6 , m - Ad J oi »ing ; t S.E. is an expanse of 
sandy marsh. Several canals or canalized channels enter the lake. 

ffi*^M 5v POt Where ^- he Bahr - mit Yezir enters is an opening 
the anri^S h erran v n u Cai ?' and °P enin S indicate the course of 
™t^M Sebennytic branch of the Nile. Burlus is noted for its 

thn^P "^4? ' W ,- h i! Cl L at T ye low within and come int o season after 
those grown on the banks of the Nile 

nJrX greatl T y exceeds the other D ^ta lakes in size, covering 
the NnttnP^l'Q -!i eXt f nds f r om Y er y "ear the Damietta branch of 
which were nn? aid h t re ? e . lves t he waters of the canalized channels 
The nJtlil u e ^ e Tanm c, Mendesian and Pelusiac branches, 
strfn ofl.nT 6 1S s t p \ rated from the sea by an extremely narrow 
the Ufa full a if OSS . W 1Gh ' when T the Mediterranean is stormy and 
the lake full, the waters meet. Its average length is about 40 m 

of the o a w a . g t bread 5 h about IS, The depth is greater than that 
It cont^inf, f 6S ' and f he W ^7 is J salt ' thou gh mixed with fresh. 
It contains a large number of islands, and the whole lake abounds 
in reeds of various kinds. Of the islands Tennis (anciently Tennesus) 

contains ruins of the Roman period. The lake supports a consider- 
able population of fishermen, who dwell in villages on the shore and 
islands and live upon the fish of the lake. Thl reeds are cove, for 
waterfowl of various kinds, which the traveller see ?n great numbers 
and w.ld boars are found in the marshes to the south. TheSuez 

Ufa Th S J n a fT^T for 20 , m - alon S the eastern edge of the 
lake. That part of the lake east of where the canal was elcavated 
» now marshy plain and the Tanitic and Pelusiac mouths of he 
Nile are dry. East : of Menzala is the site of Serbonis, another dried! 
In he\7h h ha f d Q he gener f 1 characteristics of the Delta Ugoons. 
rUp • T ■ t mUS - CZ arC La ¥ Timsa and the Great and Little 

Bitter Lakes, occupying part of the ancient bed of the Red Sea 
All three were dry or marshy depressions previously to the cuttfng 
of the Suez Canal at which time the waters of the Mediterranean 
and Red Sea were let into them (see Suez Canal) meaiterranean 
A chain of natron lakes (seven in number) lies in a vallev in the 
western desert, 70 to 90 m. W.N.W. of Cairo. In the Favum orovince 
farther south is the Birket-el-Kerun, a lake, lying below t^eTvel of 
theNile, some 30 m. long and 5 wide at its broadest part Rerun 

, is all that is left of 
the Lake of Moeris, an 
ancient artificial sheet 
of water which played 
an important part in 
the irrigation schemes 
of the Pharaohs. The 
water of el-Kerun is 
brackish, though de- 
rived from the Nile, 
which has at all seasons 
a much higher level. It 
is bounded on the north 
by the Libyan Desert, 
above which rises a bold 
range of mountains ; and 
it has a strange and pic- 
turesque wildness. Near 
the lake are several sites 
of ancient towns, and 
the temple called Kasr- 
Karun, dating from 
Roman times, distin- 
guishes the most im- 
portant of these. 
South-west of the 
Fayum is the Wadi 
Rayan, a large and 
deep depression, utiliz- 
able in modern schemes 
for re-creating the Lake 
of Moeris (q.v.). 

The Desert Plateaus. 
— From the southern 
borders of Egypt to 
the Delta in the north, 
the desert plateaus ex- 
tend on either side of 
the Nile valley. The 
the Red Sea, varies in 

EnuryWalfccr sc 

Nile and 

wldthToToo tHf n the ."--"« -e *ea sea, varies in 

the ArabUn 9 ne^r, 35 T™- anC l " kn °^" l n its northe ™ P a « as 
tne Arabian Desert. The western region has no natural barrier 

east™n n e2e n i r , dS ° f T^'' '* ^ ° f the vast Saha ^' On it 
InT^tr-'u few -, m 'les west of Cairo, stand the great pyramids 

Desert Inl!' ^ ^ ? f AsSUan k is ca « ed theLibyan 
Uesert. _ In the north the desert plateaus are comparatively low, but 
from Cairo southwards they rise to 1000 and even 1500 ft. above sea- 
level. Formed mostly of horizontal strata of varying hardnesJ thev 
present a series of terraces of minor plateaus, rising one above the 

«o?L an iTu Se T d t ! y - Sma1 - 1 ravine * worn b V the occasional^! 
storms which burst in their neighbourhood. The weatherine of this 
desert area is probably fairly rapid, and the agents at work are 
nlX 1P fl a n^h he rai?ld heating and' cooling of therocks by day and 
thlse aided hvth Ve aCt '° n ° f ^-laden wind on the softer kyers; 
these, aided by the occasional rain, are ceaselessly at work, and 
CM uohv ^11^7 Ve f? ea " s : d °tted with small isolated hill and 
thus Forming 17/ ^ &d . ls \ whlch occasionally become deep ravines, 
thk if I™! K g 6 P" ncl P al ^Pe °f scenery of these deserts. From 
this it will be seen that the desert in Egypt is mainly a rock desert 

of which hf rfa h Ce 1S £0n ?^ ° f dis [ nt egrated rock, the finer P artcTe 
ot which have been carried away by the wind; and east of the Nile 

of mo„nl mpSt e f)T vdy th£ C , aS f- Here the desert meets the line 
^L m i ?u Whlch run , s paral,el to the Red Sea and the Gulf of 
latfnn, Ih.Vlf WeSt6rn S^*' h . owev er, those large sand accumu- 
lations which are usually associated with a desert are met with. 

he In XY S 'V" 63 ° f f du ? 6S f0rm ^ d of rounded S rains of quartz, and 
hrearU L ,- eCtl °V f ^ P r< ? va!e "t wind, usually being of mall 
as th a Mvfnf< m ^f red 7A t . h ^T length; but in certain ar eas, such 
fines of H,fn g P T- and W ',? f , th e oases of Farafra and Dakhla these 
™°„ d "' ^'"g P ara 'lel to each other and about half a mile 
apart, cover immense areas, rendering them absolutely impassable 




except in a direction parallel to the lines themselves. East of the 
oases of Baharia and Farafra is a very striking line of these sand 
dunes; rarely more than 3 miles wide, it extends almost continu- 
ously from Moghara in the north, passing along the west side of 
Kharga Oasis to a point near the Nile in the neighbourhood of Abu 
Simbel — having thus a length of nearly 550 m. In the northern 
part of this desert the dunes lie about N.W.-S.E., but farther south 
incline more towards the meridian, becoming at last very nearly north 
and south. 

Oases. — In the western desert lie the five large oases of Egypt, 
namely, Siwa, Baharia, Farafra, Dakhla and Kharga or Great Oasis, 
occupying depressions in the plateau or, in the case of the last three, 
large indentations in the face of limestone escarpments which form 
the western versant of the Nile valley hills. Their fertility is due to 
a plentiful supply of water furnished by a sandstone bed 300 to 
500 ft. below the surface, whence the water rises through natural 
fissures or artificial boreholes to the surface, and sometimes to 
several feet above it. These oases were known and occupied by the 
Egyptians as early as 1600 B.C., and Kharga (q.v.) rose to special 
importance at the time of the Persian occupation. Here, near the 
town of Kharga, the ancient Hebi, is a temple of Ammon built by 
Darius I., and in the same oasis are other ruins of the period of the 
Ptolemies and Caesars. The oasis of Siwa (Jupiter Ammon) is about 
150 m. S. of the Mediterranean at the Gulf of Solium and about 
300 m. W. of the Nile (see Siwa). The other four oases lie parallel 
to and distant 100 to 150 m. from the Nile, between 25° and 29° N., 
Baharia being the most northerly and Kharga the most southerly. 

Besides the oases the desert is remarkable for two other valleys. 
The first is that of the natron lakes already mentioned. It contains 
four monasteries, the remains of the famous anchorite settlement of 
Nitriae. South of the Wadi Natron, and parallel to it, is a sterile 
valley called the Bahr-bela-Ma, or " River without Water." 

The Sinai Peninsula. — The triangular-shaped Sinai peninsula 
has its base on the Mediterranean, the northern part being an arid 
plateau, the desert of Tih. The apex is occupied by a massif of crys- 
talline rocks. The principal peaks rise over 8500 ft. Owing to the 
slight rainfall, and the rapid weathering of the rocks by the great 
range of temperature, these hills rise steeply from the valleys at their 
feet as almost bare rock, supporting hardly any vegetation. In 
some of the valleys wells or rock-pools filled by rain occur, and 
furnish drinking-water to the few Arabs who wander in these hills 
(see also Sinai). 

[Geology. — Just as the Nile valley forms the chief geographical 
feature of Egypt, so the geology of the country is intimately related 
to it. The north and south direction of the river has been largely 
determined by faults, though the geologists of the Egyptian Survey 
are finding that the influence of faulting in determining physical 
outline has, in some cases, been overestimated. The oldest rocks, 
consisting of crystalline schists with numerous intrusions of granite, 
porphyry and diorite, occupy the eastern portion of the country 
between the Nile south of Assuan and the Red Sea. The intrusive 
rocks predominate over the schists in extent of area covered. They 
furnished the chief material for the ancient monuments. At Assuan 
(Syene) the well-known syenite of Werner occurs. It is, however, a 
hornblende granite and does not possess the mineralogical com- 
position of the syenites of modern petrology. Between Thebes 
and Khartum the western banks of the Nile are composed of Nubian 
Sandstone, which extends westward from the river to the edge of the 
great Libyan Desert, where it forms the bed rock. The age of this 
sandstone has given rise to much dispute. The upper part certainly 
belongs to the Cretaceous formation ; the lower part has been con- 
sidered to be of Karroo age by some geologists, while others regard 
the whole formation to be of Cretaceous age. In the Kharga Oasis 
the upper portion consists of variously coloured unfossiliferous clays 
with intercalated bands of sandstone containing fossil silicified 
woods (Nicolia Aegyptiaca and Araucarioxylon Aegypticum) . They 
are Conformably overlain by clays and limestones with Exogyra 
Overwegi belonging to the Lower Danian, and these by clays and 
white chalk with Ananchytes ovata of the Upper Danian. In many 
instances the Tertiary formation, which occurs between Esna and 
Cairo, unconformably overlies the Cretaceous, the Lower Eocene 
being absent. The fluvio-marine deposits of the Upper Eocene 
and Oligocene formations contain an interesting mammalian fauna, 
proving that the African continent formed a centre of radiation for 
the mammalia in early Tertiary times. Arsinoitherium is the pre- 
cursor of the homed Ungulata; while Moeritherium and Palaeo- 
rnastodon undoubtedly include the oldest known elephants. Miocene 
strata are absent in the southern Tertiary areas, but are present at 
Moghara and in the north. Marine Pliocene strata occur to the south 
of the pyramids of Giza and in the Fayum province, where, in 
addition, some gravel terraces, at a height of 500 ft. above sea-level, 
are attributed to the Pliocene period. The Lake of Moeris, as a large 
body of fresh water, appears to have come into existence in Pleisto- 
cene times. It is represented now by the brackish-water lake of 
the Birket-el-Kerun. The superficial sands of the deserts and the 
Nile mud form the chief recent formations. The Nile deposits its 
inud over the valley before reaching the sea, and consequently the 
Delta receives little additional material. At Memphis the alluvial 
deposits are over 50 ft. thick. The superficial sands of the desert 
region, derived in large part from the disintegration of the Nubian 

Sandstone, occupy the most extensive areas in the Libyan Desert. 
The other desert regions of Egypt are elevated stony plateaus, 
which are diversified by extensively excavated valleys and oases, 
and in which sand frequently plays quite a subordinate part. These 
regions present magnificent examples of dry erosion by wind-borne 
sand, which acts as a powerful sand blast etching away the rocks 
and producing most beautiful sculpturing. The rate of denudation 
in exposed positions is exceedingly rapid ; while spots sheltered from 
the sand blast suffer a minimum of erosion, as shown by the preser- 
vation of ancient inscriptions. Many of the Egyptian rocks in the 
desert areas and at the cataracts are coated with a highly polished 
film, of almost microscopic thinness, consisting chiefly of oxides of 
iron and manganese with salts of magnesia and lime. It is supposed 
to be due to a chemical change within the rock and not to deposition 
on the surface.] 

Minerals. — Egypt possesses considerable mineral wealth. In 
ancient times gold and precious stones were mined in the Red Sea 
hills. During the Moslem period mining was abandoned, and it was 
not until the beginning of the 20th century that renewed efforts were 
made to develop the mining industry. The salt obtained from 
Lake Mareotis at Meks, a western suburb of Alexandria, supplies the 
salt needed for the country, except a small quantity used for curing 
fish at Lake Menzala; while the lakes in the Wadi Natron, 45 m. 
N.W. of the pyramids of Giza, furnish carbonate of soda in large 
quantities. Alum is found in the western oases. Nitrates and phos- 
phates are also found in various parts of the desert and are used as 
manures. The turquoise mines of Sinai, in the Wadi Maghara, are 
worked regularly by the Arabs of the peninsula, who sell the stones 
in Suez ; while there are emerald mines at Jebel Zubara, south of 
Kosseir. Petroleum occurs at Jebel Zeit, on the west shore of the 
Gulf of Suez. Considerable veins of haematite of good quality occur 
both in the Red Sea hills and in Sinai. At Jebel ed-Dukhan are 
porphyry quarries, extensively worked under the Romans, and at 
Jebel el-Fatira are granite quarries. At El-Hammamat, on the old 
way from Coptos to Philoteras Portus, are the breccia verde quarries, 
worked from very early times, and having interesting hieroglyphic 
inscriptions. At the various mines, and on the routes to them and 
to the Red Sea, are some small temples and stations, ranging from 
the Pharaonic to the Roman period. The quarries of Syene (Assuan) 
are famous for extremely hard and durable red granite (syenite), and 
have been worked since the days of the earliest Pharaohs. Large 
quantities of this syenite were used in building the Assuan dam 
(1898-1902). The cliffs bordering the Nile are largely quarried for 
limestone and sandstone. 

Gold-mining recommenced in 1905 at Um Rus, a short distance 
inland from the Red Sea and some 50 m. S. of Kosseir, where milling 
operations were started in March of that year. Another mine opened 
in 1905 was that of Um Garaiat, E.N.E. of Korosko, and 65 m. 
distant from the Nile. 

Climate. — Part of Upper Egypt is within the tropics, but the 
greater part of the country is north of the Tropic of Cancer. Except 
a narrow belt on the north along the Mediterranean shore, Egypt 
lies in an almost rainless area, where the temperature is high by day 
and sinks quickly at night in consequence of the rapid radiation under 
the cloudless sky. The mean temperature at Alexandria and Port 
Said varies between 57 F. in January and 81 ° F. in July; while at 
Cairo, where the proximity of the desert begins to be felt, it is 53 ° F. 
in January, rising to 84 F. in July. January is the coldest month, 
when occasionally in the Nile valley, and more frequently in the open 
desert, the temperature sinks to 32 F., or even a degree or two below. 
The mean maximum temperatures are 99 F. for Alexandria and 
1 io° F. for Cairo. Farther south the range of temperature becomes 
greater as pure desert conditions are reached. Thus at Assuan the 
mean maximum is Il8° F., the mean minimum 42 ° F. At Wadi 
Haifa the figures in each case are one degree lower. 

The relative humidity varies greatly. At Assuan the mean value 
for the year is only 38 %, that for the summer being 29 %, and for 
the winter 51 %; while for Wadi Haifa the mean is 32%, and 
20% and 42% are the mean values for summer and winter re- 
spectively. A white fog, dense and cold, sometimes rises from the 
Nile in the morning, but it is of short duration and rare occurrence. 
In Alexandria and on all the Mediterranean coast of Egypt rain falls 
abundantly in the winter months, amounting to 8 in. in the year; 
but southwards it rapidly decreases, and south of 31 ° N. little rain 

Records at Cairo show that the rainfall is very irregular, and is 
furnished by occasional storms rather than by any regular rainy 
season; still, most falls in the winter months, especially December 
and January, while, on the other hand, none has been recorded in 
June and July. The average annual rainfall does not exceed 1-50 in. 
In the open desert rain falls even more rarely, but it is by no means 
Unknown, and from time to time heavy storms burst, causing sudden 
floods in the narrow ravines, and drowning both men and animals 
These are more common in the mountainous region of the Sinai 
peninsula, where they are much dreaded by the Arabs. Snow is 
unknown Li the Nile valley, but on the mountains of Sinai and the 
Red Sea hills it is not uncommon, and a temperature of 18° F. at an 
altitude of 2000 ft. has been recorded in January. 

The atmospheric pressure varies between a maximum in January 
and a minimum in July, the mean difference being about 029 in. 




In a series of records extending over 14 years the mean pressure 
varied between 29-84 and 29-90 in. 

The most striking meteorological factor in Egypt is the persistence 
of the north wind throughout the year, without which the climate 
would be very trying. It is this " Etesian " wind which enables 
sailing boats constantly to ascend the Nile, against its strong and 
rapid current. In December, January and February, at Cairo, the 
north wind slightly predominates, though those from the south and 
west often nearly equal it, but after this the north blows almost 
continuously for the rest of the year. In May and June the prevailing 
direction is north and north-north-east, and for July, August, 
September and October north and north-west. From the few 
observations that exist, it seems that farther south the southern 
winter winds decrease rapidly, becoming westerly, until at Assuan 
and Wadi Haifa the northerly winds are almost invariable through- 
out the year. The khamsin, hot sand-laden winds of the spring 
months, come invariably from the south. They are preceded by a 
rapid fall of the barometer for about a day, until a gradient from 
south to north is formed, then the wind commences to blow, at first 
gently, from the south-east; rapidly increasing in violence, it shifts 
through south to south-west, finally dropping about sunset. The 
same thing is repeated on the second and sometimes the third day, 
by which time the wind has worked round to the north again. 
During a khamsin the temperature is high and the air extremely dry, 
while the dust and sand carried by the wind form a thick yellow fog 
obscuring the sun. Another remarkable phenomenon is the zobaa, 
a lofty whirlwind of sand resembling a pillar, which moves with 
great velocity. The southern winds of the summer months which 
occur in the low latitudes north of the equator are not felt much 
north of Khartum. 

One of the most interesting phenomena of Egypt is the mirage, 
which is frequently seen both in the desert and in the waste tracts of 
uncultivated land near the Mediterranean ; and it is often so truthful 
in its appearance that one finds it difficult to admit the illusion. 

Flora. — Egypt possesses neither forests nor woods and, as practi- 
cally the whole of the country which will support vegetation is 
devoted to agriculture, the flora is limited. The most important 
tree is the date-palm, which grows all over Egypt and in the oases. 
The lower branches being regularly cut, this tree grows high and 
assumes a much more elegant form than in its natural state. The 
dom-palm is first seen a little north of 26° N., and extends south- 
wards. The vine grows well, and in ancient times was largely 
cultivated for wine; oranges, lemons and pomegranates also abound. 
Mulberry trees are common in Lower Egypt. The sunt tree {Acacia 
nilotica) grows everywhere, as well as the tamarisk and the sycamore. 
In the deserts halfa grass and several kinds of thorn bushes grow; 
and wherever rain or springs have moistened the ground, numerous 
wild flowers thrive. This is especially the case where there is also shade 
to protect them from the midday sun, as in some of the narrow 
ravines in the eastern desert and in the palm groves of the oases, 
where various ferns and flowers grow luxuriantly round the springs. 
Among many trees which have been imported, the " lebbek " {Albizzia 
lebbek), a thick-foliaged mimosa, thrives especially, and has been 
very largely employed. The weeping-willow, myrtle, elm, cypress 
and eucalyptus are also used in the gardens and plantations. 

The most common of the fruits are dates, of which there are nearly 
thirty varieties, which are sold half-ripe, ripe, dried, and pressed in 
their fresh moist state in mats or skins. The pressed dates of Siwa 
are among the most esteemed. The Fayum is celebrated for its 
grapes, and chiefly supplies the market of Cairo. The most common 
grape is white, of which there is a small kind far superior to the 
ordinary sort. The black grapes are large, but comparatively 
tasteless. The vines are trailed on trelliswork, and form agreeable 
avenues in the gardens of Cairo. The best-known fruits, besides 
dates and grapes, are figs, sycamore-figs and pomegranates, apricots 
and peaches, oranges and citrons, lemons and limes, bananas, which 
are believed to be of the fruits of Paradise (being always in season), 
different kinds of melons (including some of aromatic flavour, and 
the refreshing water-melon), mulberries, Indian figs or prickly pears, 
the fruit of the lotus and olives. Among the more usual cultivated 
flowers are the rose (which has ever been a favourite among the 
Arabs), the jasmine, narcissus, lily, oleander, chrysanthemum, 
convolvulus, geranium, dahlia, basil, the henna plant (Lawsonia 
alba, or Egyptian privet, which is said to be a flower of Paradise), 
the helianthus and the violet. Of wild flowers the most common 
are yellow daisies, poppies, irises, asphodels and ranunculuses. 
The Poinsettia pulcherrima is a bushy tree with leaves of brilliant 

Many kinds of reeds are found in Egypt, though they were formerly 
much more common. The famous byblus or papyrus no longer 
exists in the country, but other kinds of cyperi are found. The lotus, 
greatly prized for its flowers by the ancient inhabitants, is still found 
in the Delta, though never in the Nile itself. There are two varieties 
of this water-lily, one with white flowers, the other with blue. 

Fauna. — The chief quadrupeds are all domestic animals. Of these 
the camel and the ass are the most common. The ass, often a tall 
and handsome creature, is indigenous. When the camel was first 
introduced into Egypt is uncertain — it is not pictured on the ancient 
monuments. Neither is the buffalo, which with the sheep is very 
numerous in Egypt. The horses are of indifferent breed, apparently 

of a type much inferior to that possessed by the ancient Egyptians. 
Wild animals are few. The principal are the hyena, jackal and fox. 
The wild boar is found in the Delta. Wolves are rare. Numerous 
gazelles inhabit the deserts. The ibex is found in the Sinaitic penin- 
sula and the hills between the Nile and the Red Sea, and the mouflon, 
or maned sheep, is occasionally seen in the same regions. The desert 
hare is abundant in parts of the Fayum, and a wild cat, or lynx, 
frequents the marshy regions of the Delta. The ichneumon 
(Pharaoh's rat) is common and often tame; the coney and jerboa 
are found in the eastern mountains. Bats are very numerous. 
The crocodile is no longer found in Egypt, nor the hippopotamus, 
in ancient days a frequenter of the Nile. The common or pariah 
dog is generally of sandy colour; in Upper Egypt there is a breed 
of wiry rough-haired black dogs, noted for their fierceness. Among 
reptiles are several kinds of venomous snakes — the horned viper, the 
hooded snake and the echis. Lizards of many kinds are found, in- 
cluding the monitor. There are many varieties of beetle, including 
a number of species representing the scarabaeus of the ancients. 
Locusts are comparatively rare. The scorpion, whose sting is some- 
times fatal, is common. There are many large and poisonous spiders 
and flies; fleas and mosquitoes abound. Fish are # plentiful in the 
Nile, both scaled and without scales. The scaly fish include members 
of the carp and perch kind. The bayad, a scaleless fish commonly 
eaten, reaches sometimes 3i ft. in length. A somewhat rare fish is the 
Polypterus, which has thick bony scales and 16 to 18 long dorsal fins. 
The Tetrodon, or ball fish, is found in the Red Sea, as well as in the Nile. 

Some 300 species of birds are found in Egypt, and one of the most 
striking features of a journey up the Nile is the abundance of bird 
life. Many of the species are sedentary, others are winter visitants, 
while others again simply pass through Egypt on their way to or 
from warmer or colder regions. Birds of prey are very numerous, 
including several varieties of eagles — the osprey, the spotted, the 
golden and the imperial. Of vultures the black and white Egyptian 
variety (Neophron percnopterus) is most common. The griffon and 
the black vulture are also frequently seen. There are many kinds 
of kites, falcons and hawks, kestrel being numerous. The long- 
legged buzzard is found throughout Egypt, as are owls. The so- 
called Egyptian eagle owl {Bubo ascalaphus) is rather rare, but the 
barn owl is common. The kingfisher is found beside every water- 
course, a black and white species (Ceryle rudis) being much more 
numerous than the common kingfisher. Pigeons and hoopoes abound 
in every village. There are various kinds of plovers — the black- 
headed species (Pluvianus Aegyptius) is most numerous in Upper 
Egypt; the golden plover and the white-tailed species are found 
chiefly in the Delta. The spurwing is supposed to be the bird 
mentioned by Herodotus as eating the parasites covering the inside 
of the mouth of the crocodile. Of game-birds the most plentiful 
are sandgrouse, quail (a bird of passage) and snipe. Red-legged 
and other partridges are found in the eastern desert and the Sinai 
hills. Of aquatic birds there is a great variety. Three species of 
pelican exist, including the large Dalmatian pelican. Storks, cranes, 
herons and spoonbills are common. The sacred ibis is not found in 
Egypt, but the buff-backed heron, the constant companion of the 
buffalo, is usually called an ibis. The glossy ibis is occasionally seen. 
The flamingo, common in the lakes of Lower Egypt, is not found 
on the Nile. Geese, duck and teal are abundant. The most common 
goose is the white-fronted variety ; the Egyptian goose is more rare. 
Both varieties are depicted on the ancient monuments; the white- 
fronted goose being commonly shown. Several birds of gorgeous 
plumage come north into Egypt in the spring, among others the 
golden oriole, the sun-bird, the roller and the blue-cheeked bee-eater. 

Egypt as a Health Resort. — The country is largely resorted to 
during the winter months by Europeans in search of health as well 
as pleasure. Upper Egypt is healthier than Lower Egypt, where, 
especially near the coast, malarial fevers and diseases of the re- 
spiratory organs are not uncommon. The least healthy time of 
the year is the latter part of autumn, when the inundated soil is 
drying. In the desert, at a very short distance from the cultivable 
land, the climate is uniformly dry and unvaryingly healthy. The 
most suitable places for the residence of invalids are Helwan, where 
there are natural mineral springs, in the desert, 14 m. S. of Cairo, 
and Luxor and Assuan in Upper Egypt. 

The diseases from which Egyptians suffer are very largely the result 
of insanitary surroundings. In this respect a great improvement 
has taken place since the British occupation in 1882. Plague, 
formerly one of the great scourges of the country, seems to have been 
stamped out, the last visitation having been in 1844, but cholera 
epidemics occasionally occur. 1 Cholera rarely extends south of Cairo. 
In 1848 it is believed that over 200,000 persons died from cholera, 
but later epidemics have been much less fatal. Smallpox is not un- 
common, and skin diseases are numerous, but the two most prevalent 
diseases among the Egyptians are dysentery and ophthalmia. The 
objection entertained by many natives to entering hospitals or to 
altering their traditional methods of " cure " renders these diseases 
much more malignant and fatal than they would be in other circum- 
stances. The government,however,enforces certain health regulations, 
and the sanitary service is under the direction of a European official. 

1 A vivid description of Cairo during the prevalence of plague in 
1835 will be found in A. W. Kinglake's Eothen. 




Chief Towns. — Cairo (q.v.) the capital, a city of Arab foundation, 
is built on the east bank of the Nile, about 12 m, above the 
point where the river divides, and in reference to its situation 
at the head of the Delta has been called by the Arabs " the 
diamond stud in the handle of the fan of Egypt." It has a 
population (1007) of 654,476 and is the largest city in Africa. 
Next in importance of the cities of Egypt and the chief seaport 
is Alexandria (q.v.), pop. (with Ramleh) 370,009, on the shore of 
the Mediterranean at the western end of the Delta. Port Said 
(q.v.), pop. 49,884, at the eastern end of the Delta, and at the 
north entrance to the Suez Canal, is the second seaport. Between 
Alexandria and Port Said are the towns of Rosetta (q.v.), pop. 
16,810, and Damietta (q.v.), pop. 29,354, each built a few 
miles above the mouth of the branch of the Nile of the same 
name. In the middle ages, when Alexandria was in decay, 
these two towns were busy ports ; with the revival of Alexandria 
under Mehemet Ali and the foundation of Port Said (c. i860), 
their trade declined. The other ports of Egypt are Suez (q.v.), 
pop. 18,347, at tne south entrance of the canal, Kosseir (794) on 
the Red Sea, the seat of the trade carried on between Upper 
Egypt and Arabia, Mersa Matruh, near the Tripolitan frontier, 
and El-Arish, pop. 5897, on the Mediterranean, near the 
frontier of Palestine, and a halting-place on the caravan route 
from Egypt to Syria. In the interior of the Delta are many 
flourishing towns, the largest being Tanta, pop. 54,437, which 
occupies a central position. Damanhur (38,752) lies on the 
railway between Tanta and Alexandria; Mansura (40,279) is on 
the Damietta branch of the Nile, to the N.E. of Tanta; Zagazig 
(34,999) is the largest town in the Delta east of the Damietta 
branch; Bilbeis (13,485) lies N.N.E. of Cairo, on the edge of 
the desert and in the ancient Land of Goshen. Ismailia (10,373) 
is situated midway on the Suez Canal. All these towns, which 
depend largely on the cotton industry, are separately noticed. 

Other towns in Lower Egypt are: Mehallet el-Kubra, pop. 
47,955, 16 m. by rail N.E. of Tanta, with manufactories of silk 
and cottons; Salihia (6100), E.N.E. of and terminus of a railway 
from Zagazig, on the edge of the desert south of Lake Menzala, 
and the starting-point of the caravans to Syria; Mataria 
(15,142) on Lake Menzala and headquarters of the fishing 
industry; Zifta (15,850) on the Damietta branch and the site of 
a barrage; Samanud (14,408), also on the Damietta branch, noted 
for its pottery, and Fua (14,515), where large quantities of 
tarbushes are made, on the Rosetta branch. Shibin el-Kom 
(21 ,576), 16 m. S. of Tanta, is a cotton centre, and Menuf (22,316), 
8 m. S.W. of Shibin, in the fork between the branches of the Nile, 
is the chief town of a rich agricultural district. There are many 
other towns in the Delta with populations between 10,000 and 

In Upper Egypt the chief towns are nearly all in the narrow 
valley of the Nile. The exceptions are the towns in the oases 
comparatively unimportant, and those in the Fayum province. 
The capital of the Fayum, Medinet el-Fayum, has a population 
(1907) of 37,320. The chief towns on the Nile, taking them in their 
order in ascending the river from Cairo, are Beni Suef, Minia, 
Assiut, Akhmim, Suhag, Girga, Kena, Luxor, Esna, Edfu, 
Assuan and Korosko. Beni Suef (23,357) is 77 m. from Cairo by 
rail. It is on the west bank of the river, is the capital of a 
mudiria and a centre for the manufacture of woollen goods. 
Minia (27,221) is 77 m. by rail farther south. It is also the 
capital of a mudiria, has a considerable European colony, 
possesses a large sugar factory and some cotton mills. It is the 
starting-point of a road to the Baharia oasis. Assiut (q.v.), pop. 
39,442, is 235 m. S. of Cairo by rail, and is the most im- 
portant commercial centre in Upper Egypt. At this point a 
barrage is built across the river. Suhag (17,514) is 56 m. by rail 
S. of Assiut and is the headquarters of Girga mudiria. The 
ancient and celebrated Coptic monasteries El Abiad (the white) 
and El Ahmar (the red) are 3 to 4 m. W. and N. W. respectively of 
Suhag. A few miles above Suhag, on the opposite (east) side of 
the Nile is Akhmim (q.v.) or Ekhmim (23,795), where silk and 
cotton goods are made. Girga (q.v.), pop. 19,893, is 22 m. S. by 
rail of Suhag, and on the same (the west) side of the river. It is 

noted for its pottery. Kena (q.v.), pop. 20,069, is on the east 
bank of the Nile, 145 m. by rail from Assiut. It is the chief seat of 
the manufacture of the porous earthenware water-bottles used 
all over Egypt. Luxor (q.v.), pop. (with Karnak) 25,229, marks 
the site of Thebes. It is 418 m. from Cairo, and here the gauge 
of the railway is altered from broad to narrow. Esna (q.v.), pop. 
19,103, is another place where pottery is made in large quantities. 
It is on the west bank of the Nile, 36 m. by rail S. of Luxor. 
Edfu (q.v.), pop. 19,262, is also on the west side of the river, 30 m. 
farther south. It is chiefly famous for its ancient temple. 
Assuan (q.v.), pop. 12,618, is at the foot of the First Cataract and 
551 m. S. of Cairo by rail. Three miles farther south, at Sheila], 
the Egyptian railway terminates. Korosko, 118 m. by river 
above Assuan, is a small place notable as the northern terminus 
of the caravan route from the Sudan across the Nubian desert. 
Since the building of the railway — which starts 96 m. higher up, 
at Wadi Haifa — to Khartum, this route is little used, and Korosko 
has lost what importance it had. 

Ancient Cities and Monuments. — Many of the modern cities of 
Egypt are built on the sites of ancient cities, and they generally 
contain some monuments of the time of the Pharaohs, Greeks or 
Romans. The sites of other ancient cities now in complete ruin 
may be indicated. Memphis, the Pharaonic capital, was on the 
west bank of the Nile, some 14 m. above Cairo, and Heliopolis lay 
some 5 m. N.N.E. of Cairo. The pyramids of Giza or Gizeh, on 
the edge Of the desert, 8 m. west of Cairo, are the largest of 
the many pyramids and other monuments, including the famous 
Sphinx, built in the neighbourhood of Memphis. The site of 
Thebes has already been indicated. Syene stood near to where 
the town of Assuan now is; opposite, on an island in the Nile, are 
scanty ruins of the city of Elephantine, and a little above, on 
another island, is the temple of Philae. The ancient Coptos 
(Keft) is represented' by the village of Kuft, between Luxor and 
Kena. A few miles north of Kena is Dendera, with a famous 
temple. The ruins of Abydos, one of the oldest places in Egypt, are 
8 m. S.W. of Balliana, a small town in Girga mudiria. The 
ruined temples of Abu Simbel are on the west side of the Nile, 
56 m. above Korosko. On the Red Sea, south of Kosseir, are the 
ruins of Myos Hormos and Berenice. Of the ancient cities in the 
Delta there are remains, among others, of Sais, Iseum, Tanis, 
Bubastis, Onion, Sebennytus, Pithom, Pelusium, and of the Greek 
cities Naucratis and Daphnae. There are, besides the more 
ancient cities and monuments, a number of Coptic towns, 
monasteries and churches in almost every part of Egypt, dating 
from the early centuries of Christianity. The monasteries, or 
ders, are generally fort-like buildings and are often built in the 
desert. Tombs of Mahommedan saints are also numerous, and 
are often placed on the summit of the cliffs overlooking the Nile. 
The traveller in Egypt thus views, side by side with the activities 
of the present day, where Occident and orient meet and clash, 
memorials of every race and civilization which has flourished in 
the valley of the Nile. 

Trade Routes and Communications. — Its geographical position 
gives Egypt command of one of the most important trade routes 
in the world. It is, as it were, the fort which commands the way 
from Europe to the East. This has been the case from time 
immemorial, and the provision, in 1869, of direct maritime 
communication between the Mediterranean and the Red Sea, by 
the completion of the Suez Canal, ensured for the Egyptian route 
the supremacy in sea-borne traffic to Asia, which the discovery of 
the passage to India by way of the Cape of Good Hope had 
menaced for three and a half centuries. The Suez Canal is 87 m. 
long, 66 actual canal and 21 lakes. It has sufficient depth to 
allow vessels drawing 27 ft. of water to pass through. It is 
administered by a company whose headquarters are in Paris, and 
no part of its revenue reaches the Egyptian exchequer (see Suez 
Canal). Besides the many steamship lines which use the Suez 
Canal, other steamers run direct from European ports to 
Alexandria. There is also a direct mail service between Suez 
and Port Sudan. 

The chief means of internal communication are, in the Delta the 
railways, in Upper Egypt the railway and the river. The railways 




are of two kinds: (i) those state-owned and state-worked, (2) agri- 
cultural light railways owned and worked by private companies. 
Railway construction dates from 1852, when the line from Alex- 
andria to Cairo was begun, by order of Abbas I. The state railways, 
unless otherwise indicated, have a gauge of 4 ft. 8| in. The main 
system is extremely simple. Trunk lines from Alexandria (via 
Damanhur and Tanta) and from Port Said (via Ismailia) traverse 
the Delta and join at Cairo. From Cairo the railway is continued 
south up the valley of the Nile and close to the river. At first it 
follows the west bank, crossing the stream at Nag Hamadi, 354 m. 
from Cairo, by an iron bridge 437 yds. long. Thence it continues 
on the east bank to Luxor, where the broad gauge ceases. From 
Luxor the line continues on the standard African gauge (3 ft. 6 in.) 
to Shellal, 3 m. above Assuan and 685 m. from Alexandria. This 
main line service is supplemented by a steamer service on the Nile 
from Shellal to Wadi Haifa, on the northern frontier of the Anglo- 
Egyptian Sudan, whence there is direct railway communication with 
Khartum and the Red Sea (see Sudan). 

Branch lines connect Cairo and Alexandria with Suez and with 
almost every town in the Delta. From Cairo to Suez via Ismailia 
is a distance of 160 m. Before the Suez Canal was opened passengers 
and goods were taken to Suez from Cairo by a railway 84 m. long 
which ran across the desert. This line, now disused, had itself 
superseded the " overland route " organized by Lieut. Thomas 
Waghorn, R.N., c. 1830, for the conveyance of passengers and 
mails to India. In Upper Egypt a line, 40 m. long, runs west from 
Wat-ta, a station 56 m. S. of Cairo, to Abuksa in the Fayum mudiria. 
Another railway goes from Kharga Junction, a station on the main 
line 24 m. S. of Girga, to the oasis of Kharga. These lines are 
privately owned. 

In the Delta the light railways supplement the ordinary lines and 
connect the villages with the towns and seaports. There are over 
700 m. of these lines. The railway development of Egypt has not 
been very rapid. In 1880 944 m. of state lines were open; in 1900 
the figure was 1393, and in 1905, 1688. For several years before 1904 
the administration of the railways was carried on by an international 
or mixed board for the security of foreign creditors. In the year 
named the railways came directly under the control of the Egyptian 
government, which during the next four years spent £E. 3,000,000 
on improving and developing the lines. In the five years 1902-1906 
the capital value of the state railways increased from ££.20,383,000 
to £E. 23, 200,000 and the net earnings from £E. 1,059,000 to 
£E. 1,475,000. The number of passengers carried in the same period 
rose from 12J to over 22 millions, and the weight of goods from 
slightly under 3,000,000 to nearly 6,750,000 tons. In 1906 the light 
railways carried nearly a million tons of goods and over 6,800,000 

Westward from Alexandria a railway, begun in 1904 by the 
khedive, Abbas II., runs parallel with the coast, and is intended to 
be continued to Tripoli. The line forms the eastern end of the great 
railway system which will eventually extend from Tangier to 

The Nile is navigable throughout its course in Egypt, and is largely 
used as a means of cheap transit of heavy goods. Lock and bridge 
tolls were abolished in 1899 and 1901 respectively. As a result, river 
traffic greatly increased. Above Cairo the Nile is the favourite 
tourist route, while between Shellal (Assuan) and the Sudan frontier 
it is the only means of communication. Among the craft using the 
river the dahabiya is a characteristic native sailing vessel, some- 
what resembling a house-boat. From the Nile, caravan routes lead 
westward to the various oases and eastward to the Red Sea, the 
shortest (120 m.) and most used of the eastern routes being that from 
Kena to Kosseir. Roads suitable for wheeled vehicles are found in 
Lower Egypt, but the majority of the tracks are bridle-paths, goods 
being conveyed on the backs of donkeys, mules and camels. 

Posts and Telegraphs. — The Egyptian postal system is highly 
organized and efficient, and in striking contrast with its condition 
in 1870, when there were but nineteen post-offices in the country. 
All the branches of business transacted in European post-offices are 
carried on by the Egyptian service, Egypt being a member of the 
Postal Union. It was the first foreign country to establish a penny 
postage with Great Britain, the reduction from 2§d. being made in 
1905. The inland letters and packages carried yearly exceed 
20,000,000 and foreign letters (30 % to England) number over 
4,000,000. Over £17,000,000 passes yearly through the post. A 
feature of the service are the travelling post-offices, of which there 
are some 200. 

All the important towns are connected by telegraph, the telegraphs 
being state-owned and worked by the railway administration. 
Egypt is also connected by cables and land-lines with the outside 
world. One land-line connects at El-Arish with the line through 
Syria and Asia Minor to Constantinople. Another line connects at 
Wadi Haifa with the Sudan system, affording direct telegraphic 
communication via Khartum and Gondokoro with Uganda and 
Mombasa. The Eastern Telegraph Company, by concessions, have 
telegraph lines across Egypt from Alexandria via Cairo to Suez, and 
from Port Said to Suez, connecting their cables to Europe and the 
East. The principal cables are from Alexandria to Malta, Gibraltar 
and England; from Alexandria to Crete and Brindisi; from Suez 
to Aden,- Bombay, China and Australia. 

The telephone is largely used in the big towns, and there is a trunk 
telephone line connecting Alexandria and Cairo. 

Standard Time. — The standard time adopted in Egypt is that of the 
longitude of Alexandria, 30 E., i.e. two hours earlier than Greenwich 
time. It thus corresponds with the standard time of British South 

Agriculture and Land Tenure. — The chief industry of Egypt is 
agriculture. The proportions of the industry depend upon the 
area of land capable of cultivation. This again depends upon the 
fertilizing sediment brought down by the Nile and the measure in 
which lands beyond the natural reach of the flood water can be 
rendered productive by irrigation. By means of canals* " basins," 
dams and barrages, the Nile flood is now utilized to a greater 
extent than ever before (see Irrigation: Egypt) . The result has 
been a great increase in the area of cultivated or cultivable land. 

At the time of the French occupation of Egypt in 1798, it was 
found that the cultivable soil covered 4,429,400 acres, but the 
quantity actually under cultivation did not exceed 3,520,000 
acres, or six-elevenths of the entire surface. Under improved 
conditions the area of cultivated land, or land in process of 
reclamation, had risen in 1906 to 5,750,000 acres, while another 
500,000 acres of waste land awaited reclamation. 

Throughout Egypt the cultivable soil does not present any 
very great difference, being always the deposit of the river; it 
contains, however, more sand near the river than at a distance 
from it. Towards the Mediterranean its quality is injured by the 
salt with which the air is impregnated, and therefore it is not so 
favourable to vegetation. Of the cultivated land, some three- 
fourths is held, theoretically, in life tenancy. The state, as 
ultimate proprietor, imposes a tax which is the equivalent of rent. 
These lands are Kharaji lands, in distinction from the Ushuri or 
tithe-paying lands. The Ushuri lands were originally granted in 
fee, and are subject to a quit-rent. All tenants are under obliga- 
tion to guard or repair the banks of the Nile in times of flood, or in 
any case of sudden emergency. Only to this extent does the 
corvie now prevail. The land-tax is proportionate, i.e. land under 
perennial irrigation pays higher taxes than land not so irrigated 
(see below, Finance) . The unit of land is the feddan, which equals 
i-03acre. Outof 1,153, 759 proprietors of land in 1905, 1,005,705 
owned less than 5 feddans. The number of proprietors owning 
over so feddans was 12,475. The acreage held by the first class 
was 1,264,084, that by the second class, 2,356,602. Over 1,600,000 
feddans were held in holdings of from 5 to 50 feddans. The state 
domains cover over 2 40, 000 feddans, and about 600, 000 feddans are 
owned by foreigners. The policy of the government is to main- 
tain the small proprietors, and to do nothing tending to oust the 
native in favour of European landowners. 

The kind of crops cultivated depends largely on whether the 
land is under perennial, flood or " basin " irrigation. Perennial 
irrigation is possible where there are canals which can be supplied 
with water all the year round from the Nile. This condition 
exists throughout the Delta and Middle Egypt, but only in parts 
of Upper Egypt. Altogether some 4,000,000 acres are under 
perennial irrigation. In these regions two and sometimes three 
crops can be harvested yearly. In places where perennial 
irrigation is impossible, the land is divided by rectangular dikes 
into " basins." Into these basins — which vary in area from 
600 to 50,000 acres — water is led by shallow canals when the Nile 
is in flood. The water is let in about the middle of August and 
the basins are begun to be emptied about the 1st of October. 
The land under basin irrigation covers about 1,750,000 acres. 
In the basins only one crop can be grown in the year. This 
basin system is of immemorial use in Egypt, and it was not 
until the time of Mehemet AH (c. 1820) that perennial irrigation 
began. High land near the banks of the Nile which cannot 
be reached by canals is irrigated by raising water from the Nile 
by steam-pumps, water-wheels (sakias) worked by buffalo s, 
or water-lifts (shadufs) worked by hand. There are several 
thousand steam-pumps and over 100,000 sakias 01 shadufi m 
Egypt. The fellah divides his land into little square plots by 
ridges of earth, and from the small canal which serves his hold ing 
he lets the water into each plot as needed. The same system 
obtains on large estates (see further Irrigation: Egypt). 




There are three agricultural seasons: (i) summer (sefi), ist of 
April to 31st of July, when crops are grown only on land under 
perennial irrigation; (2) flood (NUi), ist of August to 30th of 
November; and (3) winter (shetwi), ist of December to 31st 
of March. Cotton, sugar and rice are the chief summer crops; 
wheat, barley, flax and vegetables are chiefly winter crops; 
maize, millet and " flood " rice are NUi crops; millet and 
vegetables are also, but in a less degree, summer crops. The 
approximate areas under cultivation in the various seasons are, 
in summer, 2,050,000 acres; in flood, 1,500,000 acres; in 
winter, 4,300,000 acres. The double-cropped area is over 
2,000,000 acres. Although on the large farms iron ploughs, and 
threshing and grain-cleaning machines, have been introduced, 
the small cultivator prefers the simple native plough made of 
wood. Corn is threshed by a norag, a machine resembling a 
chair, which moves on small iron wheels or thin circular plates 
fixed to axle-trees, and is drawn in a circle by oxen. 

Crops. — Egypt is third among the cotton-producing countries of 
the world. Its production per acre is the greatest of any country 
but, owing to the restricted area available, the bulk raised is not 
more than one-tenth of that of the United States and about half 
that of India. Some 1,600,000 acres of land, five-sixths being in 
Lower Egypt, are devoted to cotton growing. The climate of Lower 
Egypt being very suitable to the growth of the plant, the cotton 
produced there is of excellent quality. The seed is sown at the end 
of February or beginning of March and the crop is picked in Sep- 
tember and October. The cotton crop increased from 1,700,000 
kantars l in 1878 to 4,100,000 in 1890, had reached 5,434,000 in 1900, 
and was 6,750,000 in 1905. Its average value, 1897-1905, was over 
£14,060,000 a year. The cotton exported was valued in 1907 at 
£E. 23, 598,006, in 1908 at ££.17,091,612. 

While cotton is grown chiefly in the Delta, the sugar plantations, 
which cover about 100,000 acres, are mainly in Upper Egypt. The 
canes are planted in March and are cut in the following January 
or February. Although since 1884 the production of sugar has 
largely increased, there has not been a corresponding increase in its 
value, owing to the low price obtained in the markets of the world. 
Beetroot is also grown to a limited extent for the manufacture of 
sugar. The sugar exported varied in annual value in the period 
1884-1905 from £400,000 to £765,000. 

A coarse and strong tobacco was formerly extensively grown, but 
its cultivation was prohibited in 1890. Flax and hemp are grown 
in a few places. 

Maize in Lower Egypt and millet (of which there are several 
varieties) in Upper Egypt are largely grown for home consumption, 
these grains forming a staple food of the peasantry. The stalk of the 
maize is also a very useful article. It is used in the building of the 
houses of the fellahin, as fuel, and. when green, as food for cattle. 
Wheat and barley are important crops, and some 2,000,000 acres are 
sown with them yearly. The barley in general is not of good quality, 
but the desert or " Mariut " barley, grown by the Bedouins in the 
coast region west of Alexandria, is highly prized for the making of 
beer. Beans and lentils are extensively sown, and form an important 
article of export. The annual value of the crops is over £3,000,000. 
Rice is largely grown in the northern part of the Delta, where the soil 
is very wet. Two kinds are cultivated : Sultani, a summer crop, and 
Sabaini, a flood crop. Sabaini is a favourite food of the fellahin, 
while Sultani rice is largely exported. In the absence of grass, the 
chief green food for cattle and horses is clover, grown largely in the 
basin lands of Upper Egypt. To a less extent vetches are grown for 
the same purpose. 

Vegetables and Fruit. — Vegetables grow readily, and their 
cultivation is an important part of the work of the fellahin. The 
onion is grown in great quantities along the Nile banks in Upper 
Egypt, largely for export Among other vegetables commonly 
raised are tomatoes (the bulk of which are exported), potatoes (of 
poor quality), leeks, marrows, cucumbers, cauliflowers, lettuce, 
asparagus and spinach. 

The common fruits are the date, orange, citron, fig, grape, apricot, 
peach and banana. Olives, melons, mulberries and strawberries are 
also grown, though not in very large numbers. The olive tree 
flourishes only in the Fayum and the oases. The Fayum also pos- 
sesses extensive vineyards. The date is a valuable economic asset. 
There are some 6,000,000 date-palms in the country, 4,000,000 
being in Upper Egypt. The fruit is one of the chief foods of the 
people. The value of the crop is about £1,500,000 a year. 

Roses and Dyes. — There are fields of roses in the Fayum, which 
supply the market with rose-water, Of plants used for dyeing, the 
principal are bastard saffron, madder, woad and the indigo plant. 
The leaves of the henna plant are used to impart a bright red colour 
to the palms of the hands, the soles of the feet, and the nails of both 
hands and feet, of women and children, the hair of old ladies and 
the tails of horses. Indigo is very extensively employed to dye the 

1 A kantar equals 99 In. 

shirts of the natives of the poorer classes; and is, when very dark, 
the colour of mourning ; therefore, women at funerals, and generalh 
after a death, smear themselves with it. 

Domestic Animals. — The Egyptians are not particularly a pastors 
people, though the wealth of the Bedouin in the Eastern or Arabia .1 
Desert consists in their camels, horses, sheep and goats. In t'.ie Niie 
valley the chief domestic animals are the camel, donkey, mule, ox, 
buffalo, sheep and goat. Horses are comparatively few, and are 
seldom seen outside the large towns, the camel and donkey being the 
principal beasts of burden. The cattle are short-horned, rather 
small and well formed. They are quiet in disposition, and much 
valued for agricultural labour by the people, who therefore very 
rarely slaughter them for meat. Buffaloes of an uncouth appearance 
and of a dark slaty colour, strikingly contrasting with the neat cattle, 
abound in Egypt. They are very docile, and the little children of 
the villagers often ride them to or from the river. The buffaloes are 
largely employed for turning the sakias. Sheep (of which the greater 
number are black) and goats are abundant, and mutton is the. 
ordinary butcher's meat. The wool is coarse and short. Swine are 
very rarely kept, and then almost wholly for the European inhabi- 
tants, the Copts generally abstaining from eating their meat. 
Poultry is plentiful and eggs form a considerable item in the exports. 
Pigeons are kept in every village and their flesh is a common article 
of food. 

Fishing. — The chief fishing-ground is Lake Menzala, where some 
4000 persons are engaged in the industry, but fish abound in the 
Nile also, and are caught in large quantities along the coast of the 
Delta. The salting and curing of the fish is done chiefly at Mataria, 
on Lake Menzala, and at Damietta. Dried and salted fish eggs, 
called batarekh, command a ready market. The average annual 
value of the fisheries is about £200,000. 

Canals. — The irrigation canals, which are also navigable by small 
craft, are of especial importance in a country where the rainfall is 
very slight. The Delta is intersected by numerous canals which 
derive their supply from four main channels. The Rayya Behera, 
known in its lower courses first as the Khatatba and afterwards as 
the Rosetta canal, follows the west bank of the Rosetta branch of 
the Nile and has numerous offshoots. The most important is the 
Mahmudia (50 m. long) .which connects Alexandria with the Rosetta 
branch, taking a similar direction to that of the ancient canal which 
it succeeded. This canal supplies Alexandria with fresh water. 

The Rayya Menufia, or Menuf canal, connects the two branches 
of the Nile and supplies water to the large number of canals in the 
central part of the Delta. Following the right (eastern) bank of the 
Damietta branch is the Rayya Tewfiki, known below Benha as the 
Mansuria, and below Mansura as the Fareskur, canal. This canal 
has many branches. Farther east are other canals, of which the 
'most remarkable occupy in part the beds of the Tanitic and Pelusiac 
branches. That following the old Tanitic channel is called the canal 
of Al-Mo'izz, the first Fatimite caliph who ruled in Egypt, having 
been dug by his orders, and the latter bears the name of the canal 
of Abu-1-Muneggi, a Jew who executed this work, under the caliph 
Al-Amir, in order to water the province called the Sharkia. From 
this circumstance this canal is also known as the Sharkawia. _ From 
a town on its bank it is called in its lower course the Shibini canal. 
The superfluous water from all the Delta canals is drained off by 
bahrs (rivers) into the coast lakes. The Ismailia or Fresh-water canal 
branches from the Nile at Cairo and follows, in the main, the course 
of the canal which anciently joined the Nile and the Red Sea. It 
dates from Pharaonic times, having been begun by " Sesostris," 
continued by Necho II. and by Darius Hystaspes, and at length 
finished by Ptolemy Philadelphus. This canal, having fallen into 
disrepair, was restored in the 7th century A.D. by the Arabs who 
conquered Egypt, but appears not long afterwards to have again 
become unserviceable. The existing canal was dug in 1863 to supply 
fresh water to the towns on the Suez Canal. Although designed for 
irrigation purposes, the Delta canals are also used for the transport 
of passengers and goods. 

In Upper Egypt the most important canals are the Ibrahimia 
and the Bahr Yusuf (the River of Joseph). They are both on the 
west side of the Nile. The Ibrahimia takes its water from the Nile 
at Assiut, and runs south to below Beni Suef. It now supplies the 
Bahr Yusuf, which runs parallel with and west of the Ibrahimia, 
until it diverges to supply the Fayum — a distance of some 350 m. 
It leaves the Ibrahimia at Derut near its original point of departure 
from the Nile. Although the Joseph whence it takes its name is the 
celebrated Saladin, it is related that he merely repaired it, and it is 
not doubted to be of a much earlier period. Most probably it was 
executed under the Pharaohs. By some authorities it is believed 
to be a natural channel canalized. Besides supplying the canals of, 
the Fayum with summer water, it fills many of the " basins " of I 
Upper Egypt with water in flood time. 

Manufactures and Native Industries. — Although essentially 
an agricultural country, Egypt possesses several manufactures. 
In connexion with the cotton industry there are a few mills 
where calico is made or oil crushed, and ginning-mills are 
numerous. In Upper Egypt there are a number of factories for 
sugar-crushing and refining, and one or two towns of the Delta 




possess rice mills. Flour mills are found in every part of the 
country, the maize and other grains being ground for home 
consumption. Soap-making and leather-tanning are carried on, 
and there are breweries at Alexandria and Cairo. The manu- 
facture of tobacco into cigarettes, carried on largely at Alexandria 
and Cairo, is another important industry. Native industries 
include the weaving of silk, woollen, linen and cotton goods, 
the hand- woven silk shawls and draperies being often rich and 
elegant. The silk looms are chiefly at Mehallet el-Kubra, Cairo 
and Damietta. The Egyptians are noted for the making of 
pottery of the commoner kinds, especially water-jars. There 
is at Cairo and in other towns a considerable industry in orna- 
mental wood and metal work, inlaying with ivory and pearl, 
brass trays, copper vessels, gold and silver ornaments, &c. At 
Cairo and in the Fayum, attar of roses and other perfumes are 
manufactured. Boat-building is an important trade. 

Commerce. — The trade of Egypt has developed enormously since 
the British occupation in 1882 ensured to all classes of the com- 
munity the enjoyment of the profit of their labour. The total value 
of the exterior trade increased in the 20 years 1882 to 1902 from 
£19,000,000 to £32,400,000. The wealth of Egypt lying in the culti- 
vation of its soil, almost all the exports are agricultural produce, 
while the imports are mostly manufactured goods, minerals and 
hardware. The chief exports in order of importance are: raw 
cotton, cotton seed, sugar, beans, cigarettes, onions, rice and gum- 
arabic. The gum is not of native produce, being in transit from the 
Sudan. Of less importance are the exports of hides and skins, eggs, 
wheat and other grains, wool, quails, lentils, dates and Sudan 
produce in transit. The principal articles imported are: cotton 
goods and other textiles, coal, iron and steel,, timber, tobacco, 
machinery, flour, alcoholic liquors, petroleum, fruits, coffee and live 
animals. There is an ad valorem duty of 8 % on imports and of about 
I % on exports. Tobacco and precious stones and metals pay 
heavier duties. The tobacco is imported chiefly from Turkey and 
Greece, is made into cigarettes in Egypt, and in this form exported 
to the value of about £500,000 yearly. 

In comparison with cotton, all other exports are of minor account. 
The cotton exported, of which Great Britain takes more than half, 
is worth over three-fourths of the total value of goods sent abroad. 
Next to cotton, sugar is the most important article exported. A large 
proportion of the sugar manufactured is, however, consumed in the 
country and does not figure in the trade returns. Of the imports 
the largest single item is cotton goods, nearly all being sent from 
England. Woollen goods come chiefly from England, Austria and 
Germany, silk goods from France. Large quantities of ready-made 
clothes and fezes are imported from Austria. Iron and steel goods, 
machinery, locomotives, &c, come chiefly from England, Belgium 
and Germany, coal from England, live stock from Turkey and the 
Red Sea ports, coffee from Brazil, timber from Russia, Turkey and 

A British consular report (No. 3121, annual series), issued in 1904, 
shows that in the period 1887-1902 the import trade of Egypt nearly 
doubled. In the same period the proportion of imports from the 
United Kingdom fell from 39-63 to 36-76 %. Though the percentage 
decreased, the value of imports from Great Britain increased in the 
same period from £2,500,000 to £4,500,000. In addition to imports 
from the United Kingdom, British possessions took 6-0% of the 
import trade. Next to Great Britain, Turkey had the largest share 
of the import trade, but it had declined in the sixteen years from 19 
to 15%. France about 10%, and Austria 6-72%, came next, 
but their import trade was declining, while that of Germany had risen 
from less than I to over 3%, and Belgium imports from 1-74 to 


In the same period (1887-1902) Egyptian exports to Great Britain 
decreased from 63-25 to 52-30%, Germany and the United States 
showing each an increase of over 6-o%. Exports to Germany had 
increased from 0-13 to 6-75%, to the United States from 0-26 to 
6-70%. Exports to France had remained practically stationary 
at 8-0%; those to Austria had dropped from 6-30 to 4-0 %, to 
Russia from 9-11 to 8-43%. 

For the quinquennial period 1901-1905, the average annual 
value of the exterior trade was: — imports £17,787,296; exports 
£18,811,588; total £36,598,884. In 1907 the total value of the 
merchandise imported and exported, exclusive of transit, re- 
exportation and specie, was ££.54,134,000 — constituting a record 
trade return. The value of the imports was £E.26,l2l,ooo, of the 
exports £E. 28,013,000. 

Shipping. — More than 90% of the external trade passes through 
the port of Alexandria. Port Said, which in consequence of its 
position at the northern entrance of the Suez Canal has more frequent 
and regular communication with Europe, is increasing in importance 
and is the port where mails and passengers are landed. Over 3000 
ships enter and clear harbour at Alexandria every year. The total 
tonnage entering the port increased in the five years 1901-1905 from 
2,555,259 to 3,591,281. In the same period the percentage of British 

shipping, which before 1900 was nearly 50, varied from 40 to 45, 
No other nation had more than 12 % of the tonnage, Italy, France, 
Austria and Turkey each having 9 to 12 %. The tonnage of German 
ships increased in the five years mentioned from 3 to 7 %. In 
number of steamships entering the harbour Great Britain is first, 
with some 800 yearly, or about 50 % of all steamers entering. The 
sailing boats entering the harbour are almost entirely Turkish. 
They are vessels of small tonnage. 

The transit trade with the East, which formerly passed overland 
through Egypt, has been diverted to the Suez Canal, the traffic 
through which has little to do with the trade or shipping of Egypt. 
The number of ships using the canal increased in the 20 years 1880- 
1900 from 2000 to 4000, while in the same period the tonnage rose 
from 4,300,000 to 14,000,000. In 1905 the figures were; — Number 
of ships that passed through the canal, 41 16 (2484 being British 
and 600 German), net tonnage 13,134,105 (8,356,940 British and 
2,113,484 German). Next to British and German the nationality 
of ships using the canal in order of importance is French, Dutch, 
Austrian, Italian and Russian. About 250,000 passengers (includ- 
ing some 40,000 pilgrims to Mecca) pass through the canal in a year 
(see further Suez). 

Currency. — The monetary system in force dates from 1885, when 
through the efforts of Sir Edgar Vincent the currency was placed 
on a sound basis. The system is based on the single gold standard. 
The unit is a gold coin called a pound and equal to £1, os. 6d. in 
English currency. The Egyptian pound (£E.) is divided into 100 
piastres, of which there are coins in silver of 20,10,5 and 2 piastres. 
One, i, J and ^ piastre pieces are coined in nickel and ^ and ^ 
piastre pieces in bronze. The one piastre piece is worth a fraction 
over 2§d. The ^ of a piastre is popularly called a para and the 
native population generally reckon in paras. The legal piastre 
is called the piastre tariff (P.T.), to distinguish it from the J piastre, 
which in local usage in Cairo and Alexandria is called a piastre. 
Officially the J piastre is known as 5 milliemes, and so with the coins 
of lower denomination, the para being \ millieme. The old terms 
his or " purse " (500 piastres) and khazna or " treasury " (1000 
purses) are still occasionally used. Formerly European coins of all 
kinds were in general circulation, now the only foreign coins current 
are the English sovereign, the French 20 franc piece and the Turkish 
mejidie, a gold coin worth 18 shillings. For several years no 
Egyptian gold pieces have been coined. Egyptian silver money is 
minted at Birmingham, and nickel and bronze money at Vienna. 
Bank-notes, of the National Bank, are issued for £E.ioo, JE.50, £E.I0, 
£E.5 and £E.i, and for 50 piastres. The notes are not legal tender, 
but are accepted by the government in payment of taxes. 

The history of the currency reform in Egypt is interesting as 
affording a practical example of a system much discussed in con- 
nexion with the currency question in India, namely, a gold standard 
without a gold coinage. The Egyptian pound is practically non- 
existent, nearly all that were coined having been withdrawn from 
circulation. Their place has been taken by foreign gold, principally 
the English sovereign, which circulates at a value of 97I piastres. 
In practice the system works perfectly smoothly, the gold flowing in 
and out of the country through the agency of private banking estab- 
lishments in proportion to the requirements of the circulation. It is, 
moreover, very economical for the government. As in most agri- 
cultural countries, there is a great expansion of the circulation in the 
autumn and winter months in order to move the crops, followed by 
a long period of contracted circulation throughout the rest of the 
year. Under the existing system the fluctuating requirements of 
the currency are met without the expense of alternately minting and 
melting down. 

Weights and Measures. — The metrical system of weights and 
measures is in official but not in popular use, except in the foreign 
quarters of Cairo, Alexandria, &c. The most common Egyptian 
measures are the fitr, or space measured by the extension of the 
thumb and first finger; the shibr, or span; and the cubit (of three 
kinds = 22§ , 25 and 26J in.). The measure of land is the feddan, equal 
to 1-03 acres, subdivided into 24 kirats. The ardeb is equal to about 
5 bushels, and is divided into 6 waybas, and each wayba into 24 
rubas. The okieh equals 1-32 oz., the rotl -99 ft>, the oke 2-75 lb, 
the kantar (or 100 roils or 36 okes) 99-04 lb. 

Constitution and Administration. — Egypt is a tributary state 
of the Turkish empire, and is ruled by an hereditary prince 
with the style of khedive, a Persian title regarded as the equiva- 
lent of king. The succession to the throne is by primogeniture. 
The central administration is carried on by a council of ministers, 
appointed by the khedive, one of whom acts as prime minister. 
To these is added a British financial adviser, who attends all 
meetings of the council of ministers, but has not a vote; on the 
other hand, no financial decision may be taken without his 
consent. The ministries are those of the interior, finance, public 
works, justice, war, foreign affairs and public instruction, 1 and 
in each of these are prepared the drafts of decrees, which are 

1 To the ministry of public instruction was added in 1906 a depart- 
ment of agriculture and technical instruction. 




then submitted to the council of ministers for approval, and on 
being signed by the khedive become law. No important decision, 
however, has been taken since 1882 without the concurrence of 
the British minister plenipotentiary. With a few exceptions, 
laws cannot, owing to the Capitulations, be enforced against 
foreigners except with the consent of the powers. 

While the council of ministers with the khedive forms the 
legislative authority, there are various representative bodies 
with strictly limited powers. The legislative council is a con- 
sultative body, partly elective, partly nominative. It examines 
the budget and all proposed administrative laws, but cannot 
initiate legislation, nor is the government bound to adopt its 
suggestions. The general assembly consists of the legislative 
council and the ministers of state, together with popularly 
elected members, who form a majority of the whole assembly. 
It has no legislative functions, but no new direct personal tax 
nor land tax can be imposed without its consent. It must meet 
at least once in every two years. 

For purposes of local government the chief towns constitute 
governorships (moafzas), the rest of the country being divided 
into mudirias or provinces. The governors and mudirs (heads 
of provinces) are responsible to the ministry of the interior. 
The provinces are further divided into districts, each of which 
is under a matnur, who in his turn supervises and controls the 
ontda, mayor or head-man, of each village in his district. 

The governorships are: Cairo; Alexandria, which includes 
an area of 70 sq. m.; Suez Canal, including Port Said and 
Ismailia; Suez and El-Arish. Lower Egypt is divided into the 
provinces of: Behera, Gharbia, Menufia, Dakahlia, Kaliubia, 
Sharkia. The oasis of Siwa and the country to the Tripolitan 
frontier are dependent on the province of Behera. Upper 
Egypt: Giza, Beni Suef, Fayum, Minia, Assiut, Girga, Kena, 
Assuan. The peninsula of Sinai is administered by the war office. 

Justice. — There are four judicial systems in Egypt: two 
applicable to Egyptian subjects only, one applicable to foreigners 
only, and one applicable to foreigners and, to a certain extent, 
natives also. This multiplicity of tribunals arises from the fact 
that, owing to the Capitulations, which apply to Egypt as part 
of the Turkish empire, foreigners are almost entirely exempt 
from the jurisdiction of the native courts. It will be convenient 
to state first the law as regards foreigners, and secondly the law 
which concerns Egyptians. Criminal jurisdiction over foreigners 
is exercised by the consuls of the fifteen powers possessing such 
right by treaty, according to the law of the country of the 
offender. These consular courts also judge civil cases between 
foreigners of the same nationality. 

Jurisdiction in civil matters between natives and foreigners 
and between foreigners of different nationalities is no longer 
exercised by the consular courts. The grave abuse to which 
the consular system was subject led to the establishment, in 
February 1876, at the instance of Nubar Pasha and after eight 
years of negotiation, of International or " Mixed " Tribunals 
to supersede consular jurisdiction to the extent indicated. The 
Mixed Tribunals employ a code based on the Code Napoleon 
with such additions from Mahommedan law as are applicable. 
There are three tribunals of first instance, and an appeal court 
at Alexandria. These courts have both foreign and Egyptian 
judges — the foreign judges forming the majority of the bench. 
In certain designated matters they enjoy criminal jurisdiction, 
including, since 1900, offences against the bankruptcy laws. 
Cases have to be conducted in Arabic, French, Italian and 
English, English having been admitted as a "judicial language" 
by khedivial decree of the 17th of April 1905. Besides their 
judicial duties, the courts practically exercise legislative func- 
tions, as no important law can be made applicable to Europeans 
without the consent of the powers, and the powers are mainly 
guided by the opinions of the judges of the Mixed Courts. 

The judicial systems applicable solely to Egyptians are 
supervised by the ministry of justice, to which has been attached 
since 1890 a British judicial adviser. Two systems of laws are 
administered: — (1) the Mehkemehs, (2) the Native Tribunals. 
The mehkemehs, or courts of the cadis, judge in all matters of 

personal status, such as marriage, inheritance and guardianship, 
and are guided in their decisions by the code of laws founded on 
the Koran. The grand cadi, who must belong to the sect of 
the Hanifis, sits at Cairo, and is aided by a council of Ulema or 
learned men. This council consists of the sheikh or religious chief 
of each of the four orthodox sects, the sheikh of the mosque of 
Azhar, who is of the sect of the Shafi'is, the chief (nakib) of the 
Sherifs, or descendants of Mahomet, and others. The cadis are 
chosen from among the students at the Azhar university. (In 
the same manner, in matters of personal law, Copts and other 
non-Moslem Egyptians are, in general, subject to the jurisdiction 
of their own religious chiefs.) 

For other than the purposes indicated, the native judicial 
system, both civil and criminal, was superseded in 1884 by 
tribunals administering a jurisprudence modelled on that of 
the French code. It is, in the words of Lord Cromer, " in many 
respects ill adapted to meet the special needs of the country " 
(Egypt, No. 1, 1904, p. 33). The system was, on the advice of an 
Anglo-Indian official (Sir John Scott), modified and simplified 
in 1891, but its essential character remained unaltered. In 1904, 
however, more important modifications were introduced. Save 
on points of law, the right of appeal in criminal cases was abolished, 
and assize courts, whose judgments were final, established. At 
the same time the penal code was thoroughly revised, so that the 
Egyptian judges were " for the first time provided with a sound 
working code" (Ibid. p. 49). The native courts have both 
native and foreign judges. There are courts of summary juris- 
diction presided over by one judge, central tribunals (or courts of 
first instance) with three judges, and a court of appeal at Cairo. 
A committee of judicial surveillance watches the working of the 
courts of first instance and the summary courts, and endeavours, 
by letters and discussions, to maintain purity and sound law. 
There is a procureur-general, who, with other duties, is entrusted 
with criminal prosecutions. His representatives are attached 
to each tribunal, and form the parquet under whose orders the 
police act in bringing criminals to justice. In the markak (dis- 
trict) tribunals, created in 1904 and presided over by magistrates 
with jurisdiction in cases of misdemeanour, the prosecution is, 
however, conducted directly by the police. Special Children's 
Courts have been established for the trial of juvenile offenders. 

The police service, which has been subject to frequent modifica- 
tion, was in 1895 put under the orders of the ministry of the 
interior, to which a British adviser and British inspectors are 
attached. The provincial police is under the direction of the local 
authorities, the mudirs or governors of provinces, and the 
mamurs or district officials; to the omdas, or village head-men, 
who are responsible for the good order of the villages, a limited 
criminal jurisdiction has been entrusted. 

Religion. — The great majority of the inhabitants are Mahom- 
medans. In 1907 the Moslems numbered over ten millions, 
or 91-8% of the entire population. The Christians in the same 
year numbered 880,000, or 8% of the population. Of these 
the Coptic Orthodox church had some 667 ,000 adherents. Among 
other churches represented were the Greek Orthodox, the Ar- 
menian, Syrian and Maronite, the Roman Catholic and various 
Protestant bodies. The last-named numbered 37,000 (including 
24,000 Copts). There were in 1907 over 38,000 Jews in Egypt. 

The Mahommedans are Sunnites, professing the creed com- 
monly termed " orthodox," and are principally of the persuasion 
of the Shafi'is, whose celebrated founder, the imam ash-Shafi'i, 
is buried in the great southern cemetery of Cairo. Many of 
them are, however, Hanifis (to which persuasion the Turks 
chiefly belong), and in parts of Lower, and almost universally 
in Upper, Egypt, Malikis. Among the Moslems the Sheikh-el- 
Islam, appointed by the khedive from among the Ulema (learned 
class), exercises the highest religious and, in certain subjects, 
judicial authority. There is also a grand cadi, nominated by the 
sultan of Turkey from among the Ulema of Stamboul. Valuable 
property is held by the Moslems in trust for the promotion of 
religion and for charitable purposes, and is known as the Wakfs 
administration. The revenue derived is over £250,000 yearly. 

The Coptic organization includes in Egypt three metropolitans 




and twelve bishops, under the headship of the patriarch of 
Alexandria. The minor orders are arch-priests, priests, arch- 
deacons, deacons, readers and monks (see Copts: Coptic 

Education. — Two different systems of education exist, one 
founded on native lines, the other European in character. Both 
systems are more or less fully controlled by the ministry of public 
instruction. The government has primary, secondary and 
technical schools, training" colleges for teachers, and schools 
of agriculture, engineering, law, medicine and veterinary science. 
The government system, which dates back to a period before 
the British occupation, is designed to provide, in the main, a 
European education. In the primary schools Arabic is the 
medium of instruction, the use of English for that purpose being 
confined to lessons in that language itself. The school of law 
is divided into English and French sections according to the 
language in which the students study law. Besides the govern- 
ment primary and secondary schools, there are many other 
schools in the large towns owned by the Moslems, Copts, 
Hebrews, and by various missionary societies, and in which the 
education is on the same lines. A movement initiated among 
the leading Moslems led in 1908 to the establishment as a private 
enterprise of a national Egyptian university devoted to scientific, 
literary and philosophical studies. Political and religious subjects 
are excluded from the curriculum and no discrimination in regard 
to race or religion is allowed. 

Education on native lines is given in kuttabs and in the Azhar 
university in Cairo. Kuttabs are schools attached to mosques, found 
in every village and in every quarter of the larger towns. In these 
schools the instruction given before the British occupation was very 
slight. All pupils were taught to recite portions of the Koran, and 
a proportion of the scholars learnt to read and write Arabic and a 
little simple arithmetic. Those pupils who succeeded in committing 
to memory the whole of the Koran were regarded as fiki (learned 
in Mahommedan law), and as such escaped liability to military 
conscription. The government has improved the education given 
in the kuttabs, and numbers of them have been taken under the 
direct control of the ministry of public instruction. In these latter 
schools an excellent elementary secular education is given, in 
addition to the instruction in the Koran, to which half the school 
hours are devoted. The number of pupils in 1905 was over 12,000 
boys and 2000 girls. Grants-in-aid are given to other schools where 
a sufficiently good standard of instruction is maintained. No grant 
is made to any kuttab where any language other than Arabic is taught. 
In all there are over 10,000 kuttabs, attended by some 250,000 
scholars. The number of pupils in private schools under government 
inspection was in 1898, the first year of the grant-in-aid system, 
7536; in 1900, 12,315; in 1905, 145,691. The number of girls 
in attendance rose from 598 in 1898 to 997 in 1900 and„96n in 1905. 
The Copts have about 1000 primary schools, in which the teaching 
of Coptic is compulsory, a few industrial schools, and one college 
for higher instruction. 

Cairo holds a prominent place as a seat of Moslem learning, and 
its university, the Azhar, is considered the first of the eastern world. 
Its professors teach " grammatical inflexion and syntax, rhetoric, 
versification, logic, theology, the exposition of the Koran, the 
traditions of the Prophet, the complete science of jurisprudence, or 
rather of religious, moral, civil and criminal law, which is chiefly 
founded on the Koran and the traditions, together with arithmetic 
as far as it is useful in matters of law. Lectures are also given on 
algebra and on the calculations of the Mahommedan calendar, 
the times of prayer, &c." (E. W. Lane, Modern Egyptians). The 
students come from all parts of the Mahommedan world. They 
number about 8000, of whom some 2000 are resident. The students 
pay no fees, and the professors receive no salaries. The latter main- 
tain themselves by private teaching and by copying manuscripts, 
and the former in the same manner, or by reciting the Koran. To 
meet the demand for better qualified judges for the Moslem courts 
a training college for cadis was established in 1907. Besides the 
subjects taught at the Azhar university, instruction is given in 
literature, mathematics and physical science. The necessity for 
a reorganization of the Azhar system itself being also recognized 
by the high Moslem dignitaries in Egypt, a law was passed in 1907 
creating a superior board of control under the presidency of the 
Sheikh el-Azhar to supervise the proceedings of the university and 
other similar establishments. This attempt to reform the Azhar met, 
however, with so much opposition that in 1909 it was, for the time, 

In 1907, of the sedentary Egyptian population over seven years of 
age, some 12 % of the Moslems could read and write, female literacy 
having increased 50 % since 1 897 ; of the foreign population over 
seven years of age 75 % could read and write. Of the Coptic com- 
munity about 50 % can read and write. 

Literature and the Press. — Since the British occupation there has 
been a marked renaissance of Arabic learning and literature in 
Egypt. Societies formed for the encouragement of Arabic literature 
have brought to light important texts bearing on Mahommedan 
history, antiquities and religion. Numbers of magazines and 
reviews are published in Arabic which cater both for the needs 
of the moment and the advancement of learning. Side by side 
with these literary organs there exists a vernacular press largely 
devoted to nationalist propaganda. Prominent among these papers 
is At Lewa {The Standard), founded in 1900. Other papers of a 
similar character are A I Omnia, Al Moayad and Al Gerida. The 
Mokattam represents the views of the more enlightened and con- 
servative section of the native population. In Cairo and Alexandria 
there are also published several newspapers in English and French. 

Authorities. — (a) General descriptions, geography, travel, &c. : 
Description de VlLgypte, 10 folio vols, and atlas of 10 vols. (Paris, 
1809-1822), compiled by the scientific commission sent to Egypt by 
Bonaparte; Clot Bey, Apercu general sur VEgypte, 2 vols. (Paris, 
1840); Boinet Bey, Dictionnaire geographique de VEgypte (Cairo, 
1899); Murray's and Baedeker's handbooks and Guide Joanne; 
G. Ebers, Egypt, Descriptive, Historical and Picturesque, translated 
from the German edition of 1879 by Clara Bell, new edition, 2 vols. 
(London, 1887) ; Sir Gardiner Wilkinson, Modern Egypt and Thebes 
(2 vols., London, 1843); Lady Duff Gordon, Letters from Egypt, 
complete edition (London, 1902), an invaluable account of social 
conditions in the period 1862-1869; A. B. Edwards, A Thousand 
Miles up the Nile (2nd edition, London, n.d. [1889]); Pharaohs, 
Fellahs and Explorers (London, 1892); H. W. Mardon, Geography 
of Egypt . . . (London, 1902), an excellent elementary text-book; 
D. G. Hogarth, The Nearer East (London, 1902), contains brief but 
suggestive chapters on Egypt; S. Lane Poole, Egypt (London, 1881) ; 
A. B. de Guerville, New Egypt, translated from the French (London, 
1905); R. T. Kelly, Egypt Painted and Described (London, 1902). 
The best maps are those of the Survey Department, Cairo, on the 
scale of 1 : 50000 (1-3 in. to the mile). 

(b) Administration: Sir John Bowring's Report on Egypt ... to 
Lord Palmerston (London, 1840) shows the system obtaining at that 
period. For the study of the state of Egypt at the time of the British 
occupation, 1882, and the development of the country since, the 
most valuable documents 1 are: 

I. Official. — The Reports on the Finances, Administration and 
Condition of Egypt, issued yearly since 1892 (the reports 1888-1891 
were exclusively financial). Up to 1906 the reports were by Lord 
Cromer (Sir Evelyn Baring). They clearly picture the progress of 
the country. The following reports are specially valuable as ex- 
hibiting the difficulties which at the outset confronted the British 
administrators: — Correspondence respecting the Reorganization of 
Egypt (1883) ; Reports by Mr Villiers Stuart respecting Reorganization 
of Egypt (1883 and 1895); Despatch from Lord Dufferin forwarding 
the Decree constituting the New Political Institutions of Egypt (1883) ; 
Reports on the State of Egypt and the Progress of Administrative 
Reforms (1885); Reports by Sir H. D. Wolff on the Administration 
of Egypt (1887). Annual returns are published in Cairo in English 
or French by the various ministries, and British consular reports 
on the trade of Egypt and of Alexandria and of the tonnage and 
shipping of the Suez Canal are also issued yearly. 

II. Non-official. — -Lord Cromer, .Modern Egypt (2 vols., 1 908), an 
authoritative record; Alfred (Lord) Milner, England in Egypt, first 
published in 1892, the story being brought up to 1904 in the nth 
edition; Sir A. Colvin, The Making of Modern Egypt (1906); J. 
Ward, Pyramids and Progress (1900) ; A. S. White, The Expansion 
of Egypt (1899) ; and F. W. Fuller, Egypt and the Hinterland (1901). 
See also the works cited in History, last section. 

(c) Law: H.^Lamba, De revolution de la condition juridique des 
Europeens en Egypte (Paris, 1896); J. H. Scott, The Law affecting 
Foreigners in Egypt . . . (Edinburgh, 1907) ; The Egyptian Codei 
(London, 1892). 

(d) Irrigation, agriculture, geology, &c. : Despatch from Sir Evelyn 
Baring enclosing Report on the Condition of the Agricultural Population 
in Egypt (1888); Notes on Egyptian Crops (Cairo, 1896); Yacub 
Artin Bey, La Piopriete fonciere en ligyple (Bulak, 1885) ; Report on 
Perennial Irrigation and Flood Protection for Egypt, I vol. and atlas 
(Cairo, 1894). The reports (Egypt, No. 2, 1901, and Egypt, No. 2, 
1904), by Sir William Garstin on irrigation projects on the Upper 
Nile are very valuable records — notably the 1904 report. W. Will- 
cocks, Egyptian Irrigation (2nd ed., 1899); H. G. Lyons, The 
Physiography of the River Nile and its Basin (Cairo, 1906) ; Leigh 
Canney, The Meteorology of Egypt and its Influence on Disease (1897). 
Annual meteorological reports are issued by the Public Works 
Department, Cairo. The same department issues special irrigation 
reports. See for geology Carl von Zittel, Beitrage zur Geologie und 
Paldontologie der libyschen Wiiste (Cassel, 1883); Reports of the 
Geological Survey of Egypt (Cairo, 1900, et seq.). 

(e) Natural history, anthropology, &c. : F. Pruner, Agyptens 
Naturgeschichte und Anthropologic (Erlangen, 1848) ; R. Hartmann, 
Naturgeschichtliche Skizze der Nilldnder (Berlin, 1866); Captain 
G. E. Shelley, Birds of Egypt (London, 1872). (F. R. C.) 

1 The place of publication is London unless otherwise stated. 



3 1 


The population enumerated at the census taken in April 1907 
was 11,189,978. In these figures nomad Arabs or Bedouins, esti- 
mated to number 97,381, are not included. The total population 
was thus returned at 11,287,359, or some 16% more than in 
1897 when the inhabitants numbered 9,734,405. The figures 
for 1897 compared with 6,813,919 in 1882, an increase of 43.5% 
in fifteen years. Thus, during the first twenty-five years 
of the British occupation of the country the population in- 
creased by nearly 4,500,000. In 1800 the French estimated 
the population at no more than 2,460,000; the census of 1846 
gave the figures at 4,476,440. From that year to 1882 the 
average annual increase was 1.25%. If the desert regions be 
excluded, the population of Egypt is extremely dense, being 
about 939 per sq. m. This figure may be compared with that 
of Belgium, the most densely populated country in Europe, 
589 per sq. m., and with that of Bengal, 586 per sq. m. In 
parts of Menufia, a Delta province, the density rises to 1352 per 
sq. m., and in the Kena province of Upper Egypt to 1308. 
The population is generally divisible into — 
I The fellahin or peasantry and the native townsmen. 

2. The Bedouins or nomad Arabs of the desert. 

3. The Nuba, Nubians or Berberin, inhabitants of the Nile valley 

between Assuan and Dongola. 

4. Foreigners. 

The first of these divisions • includes both the Moslem and 
Coptic inhabitants. The Bedouins, or the Arabs of the desert, 
are of two different classes: first, Arabic-speaking tribes who 
range the deserts as far south as 26 N.; secondly, the tribes 
inhabiting the desert from Kosseir to Suakin, namely the 
Hadendoa, Bisharin and the Ababda tribes. This group speak 
a language of their own, and are probably descendants of the 
Blemmyes, who occupied these parts in ancient times (see 
Arabs; Bedouins; Hadendoa; Bisharin; &c). The Nubas 
are of mixed negro and Arab blood. They are mainly agri- 
culturists, though some are keen traders (see Nubia). 

Foreigners number over 150,000 and form 15% of the total 
population. They are chiefly Greeks — of whom the majority 
live in Alexandria — Italians, British and French. Syrians 
and Levantines are numerous, and there is a colony of Persians. 
The Turkish element is not numerically strong — a few thousands 
only — but holds a high social position. 

Of the total population, about 20% is urban. In addition to 
the 97,000 pure nomads, there are half a million Bedouins 
described as " semi-sedentaries," i.e. tent-dwelling Arabs, usually 
encamped in those parts of the desert adjoining the cultivated 
land. The rural classes are mainly engaged in agriculture, which 
occupies over 62% of the adults. The professional and trading 
classes form about 10% of the whole population, but 50% of the 
foreigners are engaged in trade. Of the total population the 
males exceed the females by some 46,000. 

The Coptic inhabitants are described in the article Copts, and the 
rural population under Fellah. It remains here to describe char- 
acteristics and customs common to the Moslem Egyptians 
Physical am j particularly to those of the cities. In some respects 
character- t ^ e manner of life of the natives has been modified by 
Istlcs of con tact with Europeans, and what follows depicts in 
p general the habits of the people where little affected by 

Egyptians. western culture. With regard to physical characteristics 
the Egyptians are of full average height (the men are mostly 5 ft. 
8 in. or 5 ft. 9 in ), and both sexes are remarkably well proportioned 
and of strong physique. The Cairenes and the inhabitants of Lower 
Egypt generally have a clear complexion and soft skin of a light 
yellowish colour; those of Middle Egypt have a tawny skin, and 
the dwellers in Upper Egypt a deep bronze or brown complexion. 
The face of the men is of a fine oval, forehead prominent but seldom 
high, straight nose, eyes deep set, black and brilliant, _ mouth well 
formed, but with rather full lips, regular teeth beautifully made, 
and beard usually black and curly but scanty. Moustaches are 
worn, while the head is shaved save for a small tuft (called shusheh) 
upon the crown. As to the women, " from the age of about fourteen 
to that of eighteen or twenty, they are generally models of beauty 
in body and limbs; and in countenance most of them are pleasing, 
and many exceedingly lovely; but soon after they have attained 
their perfect growth, they rapidly decline." There are few Egyptian 
women over forty who retain either good looks or good figures. 
" The forms of womanhood begin to develop themselves about the 

ninth and tenth year : at the age oi fifteen or sixteen they gener- 
ally attain their highest degree of perfection. With regard to their 
complexions, the same remarks apply to them as to the men, with 
only this difference, that their faces, being generally veiled when 
they go abroad, are not quite so much tanned as those of the men. 
They are characterized, like the men, by a fine oval countenance, 
though in some instances it is rather broad. The eyes, with very 
few exceptions, are black, large and of a long almond-form, with 
long and beautiful lashes, and an exquisitely soft, bewitching ex- 
pression — eyes more beautiful can hardly be conceived : their 
charming effect is much heightened by the concealment of the other 
features (however pleasing the latter may be), and is rendered still 
more striking by a practice universal among the females of the higher 
and middle classes, and very common among those of the lower 
orders, which is that of blackening the edge of the eyelids both above 
and below the eye, with a black powder called ' kohl' " (Lane, 
Modern Egyptians). Both sexes, but especially the women, tattoo 
several parts of the person, and the women stain their hands and feet 
with the red dye of the henna. 

The dress of the men of the upper and middle classes who have 
not adopted European clothing — a practice increasingly common — 
consists of cotton drawers, and a cotton or silk shirt with n . 

very wide sleeves. Above these are generally worn a s ^anu e 
waistcoat without sleeves, and a long vest of silk, called 
kaftan, which has hanging sleeves, and reaches nearly to the ankles. 
The kaftan is confined by the girdle, which is a silk scarf, or cash- 
mere or other woollen shawl. Over all is worn a long cloth robe, the 
gibbeh (or jibbeh) somewhat resembling the kaftan in shape, but 
having shorter sleeves, and being open in front. The dress of the 
lower orders is the shirt and drawers, and waistcoat, with an outer 
shirt of blue cotton or brown woollen stuff; some wear a kaftan. 
The head-dress is the red cloth fez or tarbush round which a turban 
is usually worn. Men who have otherwise adopted European 
costume retain the tarbush. Many professions and religions, &c, 
are distinguished by the shape and colour of the turban, and various 
classes, and particularly servants, are marked by the form and colour 
of their shoes; but the poor go usually barefoot. Many ladies of the 
upper classes now dress in European style, with certain modifications, 
such as the head-veil. Those who retain native costume wear a very 
full pair of silk trousers, bright coloured stockings (usually pink), 
and a close-fitting vest with hanging sleeves and skirts, open down 
the front and at the sides, and long enough to turn up and fasten 
into the girdle, which is generally a cashmere shawl ; a cloth jacket, 
richly embroidered with gold, and having short sleeves, is commonly 
worn over the vest. The hair in front is combed down over the fore- 
head and cut across in a straight line ; behind it is divided into very 
many small plaits, which hang down the back, and are lengthened by 
silken cords, and often adorned with gold coins and ornaments. A 
small tarbush is worn on the back of the head, sometimes having 
a plate of gold fixed on the crown, and a handkerchief is tastefully 
bound round the temples. The women of the lower orders have 
trousers of printed or dyed cotton, and a close waistcoat. All wear 
the long and elegant head-veil. This is a simple " breadth " of 
muslin, which passes over the head and hangs down behind, one side, 
being drawn forward over the face in the presence of a man. A lady's 
veil is of white muslin, embroidered at the ends in gold and colours; 
that of a person of the lower class is simply dyed blue. In going 
abroad the ladies wear above their indoor dress a loose robe of 
coloured silk without sleeves, and nearly open at the sides, and above 
it a large enveloping piece of black silk, which is brought over the 
head, and gathered round the person by the arms and hands on each 
side. A face-veil entirely conceals the features, except the eyes; 
it is a long and narrow piece of thick white muslin, reaching to a 
little below the knees. The women of the lower orders have the same 
out-door dress of different materials and colour. Ladies use slippers 
of yellow morocco, and abroad, inner boots of the same material, 
above which they wear, in either case, thick shoes, having only toes. 
The poor wear red shoes, very like those of the men. The women, 
especially in Upper Egypt, not infrequently wear nose-rings. 

Children, though often neglected, are not unkindly treated, and 
reverence for their parents and the aged is early inculcated. They 
are also well grounded in the leading doctrines of Islam. Boys are 
circumcised at the age of five or six years, when the boy is paraded, 
generally with a bridal procession, on a gaily caparisoned horse and 
dressed in woman's clothes. Most parents send their boys to school 
where a knowledge of reading and writing Arabic — the common 
tongue of the Egyptians — is obtainable, and from the closing years 
of the 19th century a great desire for the education of girls has arisen 
(see § Education). 

It is deemed disreputable for a young man not to marry when 
he has attained a sufficient age; there are, therefore, few unmarried 
men. Girls, in like manner, marry very young, some at ten years of 
age, and few remain single beyond the age of sixteen; they are 

Generally very prolific. The bridegroom never sees his future wife 
efore the wedding night, a custom rendered more tolerable than 
it otherwise might be by the facility of divorce. A dowry is always 
given, and a simple marriage ceremony performed by a fiki (a school- 
master, or one who recites the Koran, properly one learned in fiqh, 
Mahommedan law) in the presence of two witnesses. The bridal 
of a virgin is attended with great festivity and rejoicing, a grandee's 




wedding sometimes continuing eleven days and nights. On the last 
day, which should be that terminating with the eve of Friday, or of 
Monday, the bride is taken in procession to the bridegroom's house, 
accompanied by her female friends, and a band of musicians, jugglers, 
wrestlers, &c. As before stated, a boy about to be circumcised joins 
in such a procession, or, frequently, a succession of such boys. 
Though allowed by his religion four wives, most Egyptians are 
monogamists. A man may, however, possess any number of con- 
cubines, who, though objects of jealousy to the legal wife, are tolerated 
by her in consideration of her superior position and power over them, 
a power which she often uses with great tyranny; but certain 
privileges are possessed by concubines, especially if they have borne 
sons to their master. A divorce is rendered obligatory by the simple 
words " Thou art divorced." Repudiation may take place twice 
without being final, but if the husband repeats thrice " Thou art 
divorced " the separation is absolute. In that case the dowry must 
be returned to the wife. 

Elaborate ceremonies are observed at funerals. Immediately on 
death the corpse is turned towards Mecca, and the women of the 
household, assisted by hired mourners, commence their peculiar 
wailing, while fikis recite portions of the Koran. The funeral takes 
place on the day of the death, if that happen in the morning; other- 
wise on the next day. The corpse, having been washed and shrouded, 
is placed in an open bier, covered with a cashmere shawl, in the case 
of a man; or in a closed bier, having a post in front, on which are 
placed feminine ornaments, in that of a woman or child. The funeral 
procession is headed by a number of poor, and generally blind, men, 
chanting the profession of the faith, followed by male friends of the 
deceased, and a party of schoolboys, also chanting, generally from 
a poem descriptive of the state of the soul after death. Then follows 
the bier, borne on the shoulders of friends, who are relieved by the 
passers-by, such an act being deemed highly meritorious. Behind 
come the women relatives and the hired wailers. On the way to 
the cemetery the corpse is generally carried to some revered mosque. 
Here the funeral service is performed by the imam, and the pro- 
cession then proceeds to the tomb. In the burials of the rich, water 
and bread are distributed to the poor at the grave; and sometimes 
a buffalo or several buffaloes are slaughtered there, and the flesh 
given away. The tomb is a vault, surmounted by an oblong stone 
monument, with a stele at the head and feet; and a cupola, sup- 
ported by four walls, covers the whole in the case of sheikhs' tombs 
and those of the wealthy. During the night following the interment, 
called the Night of Desolation, or that of Solitude, the soul being 
believed to remain with the body that one night, fikis are engaged 
at the house of the deceased to recite various portions of the Koran, 
and, commonly, to repeat the first clause of the profession of the 
faith, " There is no God but God," three thousand times. The 
women alone put on mourning attire, by dyeing their veils, shirts, 
&c, dark blue, with indigo; and they stain their hands, and smear 
the walls, with the same colour. Everything in the house is also 
turned upside down. The latter customs are not, however, observed 
on the death of an old man. At certain periods after the burial, a 
khatmeh, or recitation of the whole of the Koran, is performed, 
and the tomb is visited by the women relations and friends of the 
deceased. The women of the peasants of Upper Egypt perform 
strange dances, &c, at funerals, which are regarded partly as relics 
of ancient Egyptian customs. 

The harem system of appointing separate apartments to the 
women, and secluding them from the gaze of men, is observed in 
Egypt as in other Moslem countries, but less strictly. The women 
of an Egyptian household in which old customs are maintained never 
sit in the presence of the master, but attend him at his meals, and 
are treated in every respect as inferiors. The mother, however, 
forms a remarkable exception to this rule; in rare instances, also, 
a wife becomes a companion to her husband. On the other hand, 
if a pair of women's shoes are placed outside the door of the harem 
apartments, they are understood to signify that female visitors are 
within, and a man is sometimes thus excluded from the upper 
portion of his own house for many days. Ladies of the upper or 
middle classes lead a life of extreme inactivity, spending their time 
at the bath, which is the general place of gossip, or in receiving visits, 
embroidering, and the like, and in absolute dolce far niente. Both 
sexes are given to licentiousness. 

The principal meals are breakfast, about an hour after sunrise; 
dinner, or the mid-day meal, at noon; and supper, which is the 
chief meal of the day, a little after sunset. Pastry, sweetmeats and 
fruit are highly esteemed. Coffee is taken at all hours, and is, with 
a pipe, presented at least once to each guest. Tobacco is the great 
luxury of the men of all classes in Egypt, who begin and end the day 
with it, and generally smoke all day with little intermission. Many 
women, also, especially among the rich, adopt the habit. The smok- 
ing of hashish, though illegal, is indulged in by considerable numbers 
of people. Men. who can afford to keep a horse, mule or ass are 
very seldom seen to walk. Ladies ride asses and sit astride. The 
poorer classes cannot fully observe the harem system, but the women 
are in general carefully veiled. Some of them keep small shops, and 
all fetch water, make fuel, and cook for their households. Domestic 
slavery lingers but is moribund. The majority of the slaves are 
negresses employed in household duties. 

In social intercourse the Egyptians observe many forms of salu- 

tation and much etiquette ; they are very affable, and readily enter 
into conversation with strangers. Their courtesy and dignity of 
manner are very striking, and are combined with ease and a fluency 
of discourse. They have a remarkable quickness of apprehension, 
a ready wit, a retentive memory, combined, however, with religious 
pride and hypocrisy, and a disregard for the truth. Their common 
discourse is full of asseverations and expressions respecting sacred 
things. They entertain reverence for their Prophet ; and the Koran 
is treated with the utmost respect — never, for example, being placed 
in a low situation — and this is the case with everything they esteem 
holy. They are fatalists, and bear calamities with surprising resig- 
nation. Their filial piety and respect for the aged have been men- 
tioned, and benevolence and charity are conspicuous in their char- 
acter. Humanity to animals is another virtue, and cruelty is openly 
discountenanced in the streets. Their affability, cheerfulness and 
hospitality are remarkable, as well as frugality and temperance in 
food and drink, and honesty in the payment of debt. Their cupidity 
is mitigated by generosity; their natural indolence by the necessity, 
especially among the peasantry, to work hard to gain a livelihood. 
Egyptians, however, are as a rule suspicious of all not of their own 
creed and country. Murders and other grave crimes are rare, but 
petty larcenies are very common. 

The amusements of the people are generally not of a violent kind, 
being in keeping with their sedentary habits and the heat of the 
climate. The bath is a favourite resort of both sexes and all classes. 
They are acquainted with chess, draughts, backgammon, and other 
games, among which is one peculiar to themselves, called Mankalah, 
and played with cowries. Notwithstanding its condemnation by 
Mahomet, music is the most favourite recreation of the people ; the 
songs of the boatmen, the religious chants, and the cries in the 
streets are all musical. There are male and female musical per- 
formers; the former are both instrumental and vocal, the latter 
(called 'Almeh, pi. 'Awalim) generally vocal. The 'Awalim are, as 
their name (" learned ") implies, generally accomplished women, 
and should not be confounded with the Ghawazi, or dancing-girls. 
There are many kinds of musical instruments. The music, vocal 
and instrumental, is generally of little compass, and in the minor 
key; it is therefore plaintive, and strikes a European ear as some- 
what monotonous, though often possessing a simple beauty, and 
the charm of antiquity, for there is little doubt that the favourite 
airs have been handed down from remote ages. The Ghawazi (sing. 
Ghazia) form a separate class, very similar to the gipsies. They inter- 
marry among themselves only, and their women are professional 
dancers. Their performances are often objectionable and are so 
regarded by many Egyptians. They dance in public, at fairs and 
religious festivals, and at private festivities, but, it is said, not in 
respectable houses. Mehemet Ali banished them to Esna, in Upper 
Egypt; and the few that remained in Cairo called themselves 
'Awalim, to avoid punishment. Many of the dancing-girls of Cairo 
to-day are neither Awalim nor Ghawazi, but women of the very 
lowest class whose performances are both ungraceful and indecent. 
A most objectionable class of male dancers also exists, who imitate 
the dances of the Ghawazi, and dress in a kind of nondescript female 
attire. Not the least curious of the public performances are those 
of the serpent-charmers, who are generally Rifa'ia (Saadia) dervishes. 
Their power over serpents has been doubted, yet their performances 
remain unexplained; they, however, always extract the fangs of 
venomous serpents. Jugglers, rope-dancers and farce-players must 
also be mentioned. In the principal coffee-shops of Cairo are to be 
found reciters of romances, surrounded by interested audiences. 

The periodical public festivals are exceedingly interesting, but 
many of the remarkable observances connected with them are 
passing away. The first ten days of the Mahommedan 
year are held to be blessed, and especially the tenth; Z* }■ . 
and many curious practices are observed on these days, f es >' vals - 
particularly by the women. The tenth day, being the anniversary 
of the martyrdom of Hosain, the son of Ali and grandson of the 
Prophet, the mosque of the Hasanen at Cairo is thronged to excess, 
mostly by women. In the evening a procession goes to the mosque, 
the principal figure being a white horse with white trappings, upon 
which is seated a small boy, the horse and the lad, who represents 
Hosain, being smeared with blood. From the mosque the procession 
goes to a private house, where a mullah recites the story of the martyr- 
dom. Following the order of the lunar year, the next festival is that 
of the Return of the Pilgrims, which is the occasion of great rejoicing, 
many having friends or relatives in the caravan. The Mahmal, 
a kind of covered litter, first originated by Queen Sheger-ed-Dur, is 
brought into the city in procession, though not with as much pomp 
as when it leaves with the pilgrims. These and other processions 
have lost much of their effect since the extinction of the Mamelukes, 
and the gradual disuse of gorgeous dress for the retainers of the 
officers of state. A regiment of regular infantry makes but a sorry 
substitute for the splendid cavalcade of former times. The Birth 
of the Prophet (Molid en-Nebi), which is celebrated in the beginning 
of the third month, is the greatest festival of the whole year. For 
nine days and nights Cairo has more the aspect of a fair than of a 
city keeping a religious festival. The chief ceremonies take place 
in some large open spot round which are erected the tents of the 
khedive, of great state officials, and of the dervishes. Next in time, 
and also in importance, is the Molid El-Hasanen, commemorative 




of the birth of Hosain, and lasting fifteen days and nights; and at 
the same time is kept the Molid of al-Salih Ayyub, the last sovereign 
but two of the Ayyubite dynasty. In the seventh month occur 
the Molid of the sayyida Zenab, and the commemoration of the 
Miarag, or the Prophet's miraculous journey to heaven. Early in 
the eighth month (Sha'ban), the Molid of the imam Shafi'i is ob- 
served ; and the night of the middle of that month has its peculiar 
customs, being held by the Moslems to be that on which the fate of 
all living is decided for the ensuing year. Then follows Ramadan, 
the month of abstinence, a severe trial to the faithful; and the 
Lesser Festival (Al-'id as-saghir), which commences Shawwal, is 
hailed by them with delight. A few days after, the Kiswa, or new 
covering for the Ka'ba at Mecca, is taken in procession from the 
citadel, where it is always manufactured, to the mosque of the 
Hasanen to be completed; and, later, the caravan of pilgrims 
departs, when the grand procession of the Mahmal takes place. On 
the tenth day of the last month of the year the Great Festival 
(Al-'id al-kablr), or that of the Sacrifice (commemorating the willing- 
ness of Ibrahim to slay his son Ismail — according to the Arab legend), 
closes the calendar. The Lesser and Great Festivals are those known 
in Turkish as the Bairam (q.v.). 

The rise of the Nile is naturally the occasion of annual customs, 
some of which are doubtless relics of antiquity; these are observed 
according to the Coptic calendar. The commencement of the rise 
is commemorated on the night of the nth of Bauna, the 17th of 
June, called that of the Drop (Lelet-en-Nukta), because a miraculous 
drop is then supposed to fall and cause the swelling of the river. 
The real rise begins at Cairo about the summer solstice, or a few 
days later, and early in July a crier in each district of the city begins 
to go his daily rounds, announcing, in a quaint chant, the increase 
of water in the nilometer of the island of Roda. When the river 
has risen 20 or 21 ft., he proclaims the Wefa en-Nil, " Completion " 
or " Abundance of the Nile." On the following day the dam which 
closed the canal of Cairo was cut with much ceremony. The canal 
having been filled up in 1897 the ceremony has been much modified, 
but a brief description of what used to take place may be given. A 
pillar of earth before the dam is called the " Bride of the Nile," and 
Arab historians relate that this was substituted, at the Moslem 
conquest, for a virgin whom it was the custom annually to sacrifice, 
to ensure a plentiful inundation. A large boat, gaily decked out, 
representing that in which the victim used to be conveyed, was 
anchored near, and a gun on board fired every quarter of an hour 
during the night. Rockets and other fireworks were also let off, 
but the best, strangely, after daybreak. The governor of Cairo 
attended the ceremony, with the cadi and others, and gave the 
signal for the cutting of the dam. As soon as sufficient water had 
entered, boats ascended the canal to the city. The crier continues 
his daily rounds, with his former chant, excepting on the Coptic 
New Year's Day, when the cry of the Wefa. is repeated, until the 
Salib, or Discovery of the Cross, the 26th or 27th of September, at 
which period, the river having attained its greatest height, he con- 
cludes his annual employment with another chant, and presents to 
each house some limes and other fruit, and dry lumps of Nile mud. 

The period of the hot winds, called the khamsin, that is, " the 
fifties," is calculated from the day after the Coptic Easter, and ter- 
minates on the day of Pentecost, and the Moslems observe the 
Wednesday preceding this period, called " Job's Wednesday," as 
well as its first day, when many go into the country from Cairo, 
" to smell the air." This day is hence called Shem en-Nesim, or 
" the smelling of the zephyr." The Ulema observe the same custom 
on the first three days of the spring quarter. 

Tombs of saints abound, one or more being found in every town 
and village; and no traveller up the Nile can fail to remark how 
every prominent hill has the sepulchre of its patron saint. The 
great saints of Egypt are the imam Ash-Shafi'i, founder of the per- 
suasion called after him, the sayyid Ahmad al-BaidawI, and the 
sayyid Ibrahim Ed-Desuki, both of whom were founders of orders of 
dervishes. Al-Baidawi, who lived in the 13th century A.D., is buried 
at the town of Tanta, in the Delta, and his tomb attracts many 
thousands of visitors at each of the three festivals held yearly in his 
honour; Ed-Desuki is also much revered, and his festivals draw 
together, in like manner, great crowds to his birthplace, the town 
of Desuk. But, besides the graves of her native saints, Egypt boasts 
of those of several members of the Prophet's family, the tomb of 
the sayyida Zeyneb, daughter of 'Ali, that of the sayyida Sekeina, 
daughter of Hosain, and that of the sayyida Nefisa, great-grand- 
daughter of Hasan, all of which are held in high veneration. The 
mosque of the Hasanen (or that of the " two Hasans ") is the 
most reverenced shrine in the country, and is believed to contain 
the head of Hosain. Many orders of Dervishes live in Egypt, the 
following being the most celebrated: — (1) the Rifa'ia, and their 
sects the 'Ilwania and Saadia; (2) the Qadiria (Kahirla), or howling 
dervishes; (3) the Ahmedla, or followers of the sayyid Ahmad al- 
Baidawl, and their sects the Beyumia (known by their long hair), 
Shinnawia, Sharawia and many others; and (4) the Baramia, or 
followers of the sayyid Ibrahim Ed-Desuki. These are all presided 
over by a direct descendant of the caliph Abu Bekr, called the 
Sheikh El-Bekri. The Saadia are famous for charming and eating 
live serpents, &c, and the 'Ilwania for eating fire, glass, &c. The 
Egyptians firmly believe in the efficacy of charms, a belief associated 

with that in an omnipresent and over-ruling providence. Thus the 
doors of houses are inscribed with sentences from the Koran, or the 
like, to preserve from the evil eye, or avert the dangers of an unlucky 
threshold ; similar inscriptions may be observed over most shops, 
while almost every one carries some charm about his person. The 
so-called sciences of magic, astrology and alchemy still flourish. 

Authorities. — The standard authority for the Moslem Egyptians 
is E. W. Lane's Manners and Customs of the Modern Egyptians, first 
published in 1836. The best edition is that of i860, edited, with 
additions, by E. S. Poole. See also B. Saint-John, Village Life in 
Egypt (2 vols., 1852); S. Lane Poole, Social Life in Egypt (1884); 
P. Arminjon, V Enseignement, la doctrine, et la vie dans les universitds 
musulmanes d'Hgypte (Paris, 1907). For the language see J. S. 
Willmore, The Spoken Arabic of Egypt (2nd ed., London,,. 1905); 
Spitta Bey, Grammatik des arabischen Vulgardialektes von Agypten, 
Conies arabes modernes (Leiden, 1883). For statistical information 
consult the reports on the censuses of 1897 and 1907, published by 
the Ministry of the Interior, Cairo, in 1898 and 1909. 

(E.S. P.; S. L.-P.; F. R. C.) 


The important part which the financial arrangements have 
played in the political and social history of Egypt since the 
accession of Ismail Pasha in 1863 is shown in the section History 
of this article. Here it is proposed to trace the steps by which 
Egypt, after having been brought to a state of bankruptcy, 
passed through a period of great stress, and finally attained 
prosperity and a large measure of financial autonomy. 

In 1862 the foreign debt of Egypt stood at £3,292,000. With 
the accession of Ismail (q.v.) there followed a period of wild 
extravagance and reckless borrowing accompanied by the 
extortion of every piastre possible from the fellahin. The real 
state of affairs was disclosed in the report of Mr Stephen Cave, 
a well-known banker, who was sent by the British government 
in December 1875 to inquire into the situation. The Cave 
report showed that Egypt suffered from " the ignorance, dis- 
honesty, waste and extravagance of the East " and from " the 
vast expense caused by hasty and inconsiderate endeavours to 
adopt the civilization of the West." The debtor and creditor 
account of the state from 1864 to 1875 showed receipts amounting 
to £148,215,000. Of this sum over £94,000,000 had been obtained 
from revenue and nearly £4,000,000 by the sale of the khedive's 
shares in the Suez Canal to Great Britain. The rest was credited 
to: loans £31,713,000, floating debt £18,243,000. The cash 
which reached the Egyptian treasury from the loans and floating 
debt was far less than the nominal amount of such loans, none 
of which cost the Egyptian government less than 12% per 
annum. When the expenditure during the same period was 
examined the extraordinary fact was disclosed that the sum 
raised by revenue was only three millions less than that spent 
on administration, tribute and public works, including a sum 
of £10,500,000, described as " expenses of questionable utility 
or policy." The whole proceeds of the loans and floating debt 
had been absorbed in payment of interest and sinking funds, 
with the exception of £16,000,000 debited to the Suez Canal. 
In other words, Egypt was burdened with a debt of £91,000,000 — 
funded or floating — for which she had no return, for even from 
the Suez Canal she derived no revenue, owing to the sale of the 
khedive's shares. 

Soon after Mr Cave's report appeared (March 1876), default 
took place on several of the loans. Nearly the whole of the debt, 
it should be stated, was held in England or France, and at the 
instance of French financiers the stoppage of payment was 
followed by a scheme to unify the debt. This scheme included 
the distribution of a bonus of 25% to holders of treasury bonds. 
These bonds had then reached a sum exceeding £20,000,000 
and were held chiefly by French firms. The unification scheme 
was elaborated in a khedivial decree of the 7th of May 1876, 
but was rendered abortive by the opposition of the British 
bondholders. Its place was taken by another scheme drawn 
up by Mr (afterwards Lord) Goschen and M. Joubert, who 
represented the British and French bondholders respectively. 
The details of this settlement, promulgated by decree of the 1 7th 
of November 1876, need not be given, as it was superseded in 
1880. One of the securities devised for the benefit of the bend 
holders in the abortive scheme of May 1876 was retained in the 




Goschen-Joubert settlement, and being continued in later settle- 
ments grew to be one of the most important institutions in 
Egypt. This security was the establishment of a Treasury 
of the Public Debt, known by its French title of Caisse de la 
Dettc, and commonly spoken of simply as '"the Caisse." The 
duty of this body was to act as receivers of the revenues assigned 
to the service of the debt. To render their powers effective 
they were given the right to sue the Egyptian government in 
the Mixed Tribunals for any breach of engagement to the 

The Goschen-Joubert settlement was accompanied by guar- 
antees against maladministration by the appointment of an 
Englishman and a Frenchman to superintend the 
™ uJfrT ° /revenue and expenditure — the "Dual Control"; 
tlon. while a commission was appointed in 1878 to investi- 

gate the condition of the country. The settlement 
of 1880 was effected on the basis of the proposals made by this 
commission, and was embodied in the Law of Liquidation of 
July 1880 — after the deposition of Ismail. For the purposes 
of the new settlement the loans raised by Ismail on his private 
estates, those known as the Daira {i.e. " administrations ") and 
Domains loans, were brought into account. By the Law of 
Liquidation the floating debt was paid off, the whole debt being 
consolidated into four large loans, upon which the rate of interest 
was reduced to a figure which it was considered Egypt was able 
to bear. The Egyptian debt under this composition was: 

Privileged debt £22,609,000 

Unified debt 58,018,000 

Daira Sanieh loan 9,513,000 

Domains loan 8,500,000 


The rate of interest was, on the Privileged debt and Domains 
loan, 5%; on the Unified debt and Daira loan, 4%. Under 
this settlement the total annual charges on the country amounted 
to £4,500,000, about half the then revenue of Egypt. These 
charges included the services of the Privileged and Unified 
debts, the tribute to Turkey and the interest on the Suez Canal 
shares held by Great Britain, but excluded the interest on the 
Daira and Domains loans, expected to be defrayed by the 
revenues from the estates on which those loans were secured. 
The general revenue of Egypt was divided between the bond- 
holders and the government, any surplus on the bondholders' 
share being devoted to the redemption of the capital. 

The 1880 settlement proved little more lasting than that of 
1876. After a brief period of prosperity, the Arabi rising, the 
riots at Alexandria, and the events generally which led to the 
British occupation of Egypt in 1882, followed by the losses 
incurred in the Sudan in the effort to prevent it falling into the 
hands of the Mahdi, brought Egypt once more to the verge of 
financial disaster. The situation was an anomalous one. While 
the revenue assigned to the service of the debt was more than 
sufficient for the payment of interest and the sinking fund was 
in full operation, the government found that their share of the 
revenue was altogether inadequate for the expenses of administra- 
tion, and they were compelled to borrow on short loans at high 
rate of interest. Moreover, to make good the losses incurred at 
Alexandria, and to get money to pay the charges arising out of 
the Sudan War and the Arabi rebellion, a new loan was essential. 
On the initiative of Great Britain a conference between the 
representatives of the great powers and Turkey was held in 
London, a*nd resulted in the signing of a convention in March 
1885. The terms agreed upon in this instrument, known as 
the London Convention, were embodied in a khedivial decree, 
which, with some modification in detail, remained for twenty 
years the organic law under which the finances of Egypt were 

The principle of dividing the revenue of the country between 
the Caisse, as representing the bondholders, and the government 
was maintained by the London Convention. The revenue 
assigned to the service of the debt, namely, that derived from 
the railway, telegraphs, port of Alexandria, customs (including 

tobacco) and from four of the provinces, remained as before. 
It was recognized, however, that the non-assigned revenue was 
insufficient to meet the necessary expenses of govern- pft, v / s / ons 
ment, and a scale of administrative expenditure was of the 
drawn up. This was originally fixed at ££.5,237,000/ London 
but subsequently other items were allowed, and ~° ayea ' 
in 1904, the last year in which the system described 
existed, it was ££.6,300,600. The Caisse was authorized, 
after payment of the coupons on the debt, to make good 
out of their balance in hand the difference between the 
authorized expenditure and the non-assigned revenue. If a 
surplus remained to the Caisse after making good such deficit 
the surplus was to be divided equally between the Caisse and the 
government; the government to be free to spend its share as 
it pleased, while the Caisse had to devote its share to the reduc- 
tion of the debt. This limitation of administrative expenditure 
was the cardinal feature and the leading defect of the convention. 
Those responsible for this arrangement — the most favourable 
for Egypt that Great Britain could secure — failed to recognize 
the complete change likely to result from the British occupation 
of Egypt, and probably regarded that occupation as temporary. 
The system devised might have been justifiable as a check on a 
retrograde government, but was wholly inapplicable to a reform- 
ing government and a serious obstacle to the attainment of 
national prosperity. In practice administrative expenditure 
always exceeded the amount fixed by the convention. Any 
excess could, however, only be met out of the half-share of the 
eventual surplus reached in the manner described. Consequently, 
in order to meet new expenditure necessitated by the growing 
wants of a country in process of development, just double the 
amount of revenue had to be raised. 

To return to the provisions of the London Convention. The 
convention left the permanent rate of interest on the debt, 
as fixed by the Law of Liquidation, unchanged, but to afford 
temporary relief to the Egyptian exchequer a reduction of 5% 
on the interest of the debt was granted for two years, on condition 
that if at the end of that period payment, including the arrears 
of the two years, was not resumed in full, another international 
commission was to be appointed to examine into the whole 
financial situation. Lastly, the convention empowered Egypt 
to raise a loan of nine millions, guaranteed by all the powers, 
at a rate of interest of 3 %. For the service of this loan — known 
as the Guaranteed loan — an annuity of £315,000 was provided 
in the Egyptian budget for interest and sinking fund. The 
£9,000,000 was sufficient to pay the Alexandria indemnities, to 
wipe out the deficits of the preceding years, to give the Egyptian 
treasury a working balance of £E. 500,000 and thereby avoid 
the creation of a fresh floating debt, and to provide a million 
for new irrigation works. To the wise foresight which, at a 
moment when the country was sinking beneath a weight of debt, 
did not hesitate to add this million for expenditure on productive 
works, the present prosperity of Egypt is largely due. 

The provisions of the London Convention did not exhaust the 
restrictions placed upon the Egyptian government in respect 
of financial autonomy. These restrictions were of two categories, 
(1) those independent of the London Convention, (2) those 
dependent upon that instrument. In the first category came 
(a) the prohibition to raise a loan without the consent of the 
Porte. The right to raise loans had been granted to the khedive 
Ismail in 1873, but was taken away in 18 79 by the firman appoint- 
ing Tewfik khedive. (b) Next came the inability to levy taxes 
on foreigners without the consent of their respective governments. 
This last obligation was, in virtue of the Capitulations, applicable 
to Egypt as part of the Ottoman empire. The only exception, 
resulting from the Ottoman law under which foreigners are 
allowed to acquire and hold real property, is the land tax. (All 
taxes formerly paid by natives and not by foreigners have been 
abolished in Egypt, but the immunity described constitutes a 
most serious obstacle to the redistribution of the burden of 
taxation in a more equitable manner.) 

J The figures of the debt are always given in £ sterling. The 
budget figures are in £E. (pounds Egyptian), equal to £1, os. 6d. 




From the purely Egyptian point of view the most powerful 
restriction in this first category remains to be named. In 1883 
the supervision exercised over the finances by French and 
British controllers was replaced by that of a British official 
called the financial adviser. The British government has 
declared that " no financial decision shall be taken without his 
consent," a declaration never questioned by the Egyptian 
government. This restriction, therefore, is at the same time 
the chief safeguard for the purity of Egypt's finances. 

In the second category of restrictions, namely, those dependent 
on the London Convention, were the various commissions or 
boards known as Mixed Administrations and having relations of a 
quasi-independent character with the ministry of finance. Of 
these boards by far the most important was the Caisse. As first 
constituted it consisted of a French, an Austrian, and an Italian 
member; a British member was added in 1877 and a German and 
a Russian member in 1885. The revenue assigned to the debt 
charges was paid direct to the Caisse without passing through the 
ministry of finance. The assent of the Caisse (as well as that of 
the sultan) was necessary before any new loan could be issued, and 
in the course of a few years from its creation this body acquired 
very extensive powers. Besides the Caisse there was the Railway 
Board, which administered the railways, telegraphs and port of 
Alexandria for the benefit of the bondholders, and the Daira and 
Domains commissions, which administered the estates mortgaged 
to the holders of those loans. Each of the three boards last named 
consisted of an Englishman, a Frenchman and an Egyptian. 

During the two years that followed the signing of the London 
Convention, the financial policy of the Egyptian government was 
The race directed to placing the country in a position to resume 
against full payment of the interest on the debt in 1887, and 
bank- thereby to avoid the appointment of an international 
ruptcy. commission. By the exercise of the most rigid economy 
in all branches this end was attained, though budgetary equi- 
librium was only secured by a variety of financial expedients, 
justified by the vital importance of saving Egypt from further 
international interference. By such means this additional 
complication was averted, but the struggle to put Egypt in a 
genuinely solvent position was by no means over. It was not 
until his report on the financial results of 1888 that Sir Evelyn 
Baring (afterwards Lord Cromer) was able to inform the British 
government that the situation was such that " it would take a 
series of untoward events seriously to endanger the stability of 
Egyptian finance and the solvency of the Egyptian government." 
From this moment the corner was turned, and the era of financial 
prosperity commenced. The results of the labours of the preced-, 
ing six years began to manifest themselves with a rapidity which 
surprised the most sanguine observers. The principal feature of 
the successive Egyptian budgets of 1890-1894 was the fiscal 
relief afforded to the population. From 1894 onward more 
attention was paid than had hitherto been possible to the 
legitimate demands of the spending departments and to the 
prosecution of public works. Of these the most notable was the 
construction (1898-1902) of the Assuan dam, which by bringing 
more land under cultivation permanently increased the resources 
of the country and widened the area of taxation. 

With the accumulating proofs of the financial stability of the 
country various changes were made in connexion with the debt 
charges. With the consent of the powers a General 
funds. Reserve Fund was created by decree of the 1 2th of July 
1888, into which was paid the Caisse's half-share in the 
eventual surplus of revenue. This fund, primarily intended as a 
security for the bondholders, might be drawn upon for extra- 
ordinary expenditure with the consent of the commissioners of 
the Caisse. Large sums were so advanced for the purposes of 
drainage and irrigation and other public works, and in relief 
of taxation. The defect of this arrangement consisted in the 
necessity of obtaining the consent of the commissioners — a con- 
sent sometimes withheld on purely political grounds. At the 
same time it is believed that but for the faculty given by the 
decree of 1888 to spend the General Reserve Fund on public works, 
the financial system elaborated by the London Convention would 

have broken down altogether. Between 1888 and 1904 about 
£10,000,000 was devoted from this fund to public works. 

In June 1890 the assent of the powers was obtained to th« 
conversion of the Preference (Privileged), Domains and Daira 
loans on the following conditions, imposed at the initiative of the 
French government: — 

1. The employment of the economies resulting from the conver- 
sion was to be the subject of future agreement with the powers. 

2. The Dai'ra loan was to be reimbursed at 85 %, instead of 80 %, 
as provided by the Law of Liquidation. 

3. The sales of Domains and Dai'ra lands were to be restricted to 
£E. 300,000 a year each, thus prolonging the period of liquidation 
of those estates. 

The interest on the Preference stock was reduced from 5 to 
3 1 %, and on the Domains from 5 to 4! %. As regards the Da'ira 
loan, there was no apparent reduction in the rate of interest, 
which remained at 4%, but the bondholders received £85 of the 
new stock for every £100 of the old. The capital of the debt was 
increased by £1,945,000 by these conversions, while the annual 
economy to the Egyptian government amounted at the time of 
the conversion to ££.348,000. Further, an engagement was 
entered into that there should be no reimbursement of the loans 
till 1905 for the Preference and Da'ira, and 1908 for the Domains. 
Byan arrangement concluded in June 1898, between the Egyptian 
government and a syndicate, the unsold balance of the Daira 
estates was taken over by the syndicate in October 1905, for the 
amount of the debt remaining, when the Da'ira loan ceased to 
exist. The fund formed by the accumulation of the economies re- 
sulting from the conversion of the Privileged, Da'ira and Domains 
loan was known as the Conversion Economies Fund. The fund 
could not be used for any purpose without the consent of the 
powers, and the money paid into it was invested by the Caisse in 
Egyptian stock. The fund therefore acted as a very expensive 
sinking fund, the market price of the stock purchased being above 
par. Up to 1904 the consent of the powers to the employment of 
this fund for any purpose of public utility was withheld. On the 
31st of December of that year the fund amounted to £E. 6, 031,000. 
It may be added that besides the General Reserve Fund and the 
Conversion Economies Fund, there existed another fund called 
the Special Reserve Fund. This was constituted in 1886 and was 
chiefly made up of the net savings of the Egyptian government on 
its share of the annual surpluses from revenue. Of the three 
funds this last-named was the only one at the absolute disposal 
of the government. The whole of the extraordinary expenditure 
of the Sudan campaigns of 1896-1898, with the exception of 
£800,000 granted by the British government, was paid out of this 
fund^ — a sum amounting in round figures to £1,500,000. 

Notwithstanding all the hampering conditions stated, the 
prosperity of the country became more manifest each succeeding 
year. During the four years 1883-1886, both inclusive, 
the aggregate deficit amounted to £E. 2, 606,000. In ^g^J^ 

1887 there was practical equilibrium in the budget, in 

1 888 there was a deficit of £E. 53 ,000. In 1889 there was a surplus 
of £E. 218,000, and from that date onward every year has shown 
a surplus. In 1895 the surplus exceeded, for the first time, 
£E.i,ooc,ooo. The growth of revenue was no less marked. " In 
1883 — the first complete year after the British occupation — the 
revenue was slightly under 9 millions. This sum was collected 
with difficulty. The revenue steadily rose until, in 1890, the 
figure of 10 millions was exceeded. In 1897 a figure of over 11 
millions was attained. Continuing to rise with ever-increasing 
rapidity, a revenue of close on 12 millions was collected in 1901 
and 1902, in spite of the fact that during the latter of these two 
years the Nile flood was one of the lowest on record. In 1903 the 
revenue amounted to 125 millions, and in 1904 the unprecedented 
figure of £E. 13,906,000 was reached." 1 Yet during this period 
the amount of direct taxation remitted reached £E. 1,900,000 a 
year. Arrears of land tax to the extent of ££.1,245,000 were 
cancelled. In indirect taxation the salt tax had been reduced by 
40%, the postal, railway and telegraph rates lowered, octroi 
duties and bridge and lock dues abolished. The only increase of 
taxation had been on tobacco, on which the duty was raised from 

1 Egypt, No. 1 (1905), p. 20. 




P.T. 14 to P.T. 20 per kilogramme. At the same time the house 
duty, with the consent of the powers, had been imposed on 
European residents. The fact that during the period under 
review Egypt suffered very severely from the general fall in the 
price of commodities makes the prosperity of the country the more 
remarkable. Had it not been for the great increase of production 
as the result of improved irrigation and the fiscal relief afforded to 
landowners, the agricultural depression would have impaired the 
financial situation. In this connexion it should be stated that 
during 1899 the reassessment of the land tax, a much-needed 
reform, was seriously taken in hand. The existing assessment, 
made before the British occupation, had long been condemned 
by all competent authorities, but the inherent intricacies and 
difficulties of the problem had hitherto postponed a solution. 
After careful study and a preliminary examination of the land, a 
scheme was passed which has given satisfaction to the landowning 
community, and which distributes the tax equitably in proportion 
to the fertility of the soil. Thereassessmentwascompletedini907. 
While the country thus prospered it also suffered greatly from 
the restrictions imposed by the system of international control. 
The cost This system produced a great disproportion between 
of later- the sums available for capital and those available for 
national- administrative expenditure. Although the money for 
*"' public works could be obtained out of grants from 

the General Reserve Fund, there was no fund from which to 
provide a sufficient sum to keep those works in order. Moreover, 
to avoid having to pay half the amount received into the General 
Reserve Fund the government was compelled to keep certain 
items of revenue and expenditure out of the accounts altogether 
— a violation of the principles of sound finance. Then there was 
the glaring anomaly of allowing the Conversion Economies to 
accumulate at compound interest in the hands of the commis- 
sioners of the Caisse, instead of using the money for remunerative 
purposes. The net result of internationalism was to impose an 
extra charge of about £1 ,7 50,000 a year on the Egyptian treasury. 
All these cumbersome restrictions were swept away by the 
khedivial decree of the 28th of November 1904, a decree which 
Bgygf received the assent of the powers and was the result 
gains of the Anglo-French agreement of April 1904 (see 

tinamdal § History). The decree did not affect the inability 
UDert y- of Egypt to tax foreigners without their consent nor 
remove the right of Turkey to veto the issue of new loans, but 
in other respects the financial changes made by it were of a 
radical character. The main effect was to give to the Egyptian 
government a free hand in the disposal of its own resources so 
long as the punctual payment of interest on the debt was assured. 
The plan devised by the London Convention of fixing a limit 
to administrative expenditure was abolished. The consent of 
the Caisse to the raising of a new loan was no longer required. 
The Caisse itself remained, but shorn of all political and adminis- 
trative powers, its functions being strictly limited to receiving 
the assigned revenues and to ensuring the due payment of the 
coupon. The nature of the assigned revenue was altered, the land 
tax being substituted for those previously assigned, that tax 
being chosen as it had a greater character of stability than 
any other source of revenue. By this means Egypt gained com- 
plete control of its railways, telegraphs, the port of Alexandria 
and the customs, and as a consequence the mixed administration 
known as the Railway Board ceased to exist. Moreover, it was 
provided that when the Caisse had received from the land tax 
the amount needed for the service of the debt, the balance of the 
tax was to be paid direct to the Egyptian treasury. The Con- 
version Economies Fund was also placed at the free disposal 
of the Egyptian government. The General Reserve Fund 
ceased to exist, but for the better security of the bondholders 
a reserve fund of £1,800,000 was constituted and left in the 
hands of the Caisse to be used in the highly improbable event 
of the land tax being insufficient to meet the debt charges. 
Moreover, the Caisse started under the new arrangement with a 
cash balance of £1,250,000. The interest of the money lying 
in the hands of the Caisse goes towards meeting the debt charges 
and thus reduces the amount needed from the land tax. The 

bondholders gained a further material advantage by the consent 
of the Egyptian government to delay the conversion of the 
loans, which under previous arrangements they would have been 
free to do in 1905. It was agreed that there should be no con- 
version of the Guaranteed or Privileged debts before 1910 and 
no conversion of the Unified debt until 1912. Such were the 
chief provisions of the khedivial decree, and in 1905, for the first 
time, it was possible to draw up the Egyptian budget in accord- 
ance with the needs of the country and on perfectly sound 

In the system adopted in 1905 and since maintained, recurring and 
non-recurring expenditure were shown separately, the non-recurring 
expenditure being termed " special." At the same time a new 
General Reserve Fund was created, made up chiefly of the surpluses 
of the old General Reserve, Special Reserve, and Conversion 
Economies funds. This new fund started with a capital of 
£13.376,000 and was replenished by the surpluses of subsequent 
years, by the interest earned by its temporary investment, and by 
the sums accruing by the liquidation of the Dai'ra and Domains loans. 
During 1905 and 1506 about £3,000,000 was paid into the fund 
through the liquidation of the Dai'ra loan. From this fund, which 
had a balance of over £12,000,000 in 1906, is taken capital expendi- 
ture on remunerative public works in Egypt and the Sudan, and 
while the fund lasts the necessity for any new loan is avoided. The 
greater freedom of action attained as the result of the Anglo-French 
declaration of 1904 enabled the Egyptian government to advance 
simultaneously along the lines of fiscal reform and increased ad- 
ministrative expenditure. Thus in 1906 the salt monopoly was 
abolished at a cost to the revenue of £175,000, while the reduction 
of import duties on coal and other fuels, live-stock, &c, involved 
a further loss of £118,000, and an increase of over £1,000,000 in 
expenditure was budgeted for. The accounts for 1907 showed 
a total revenue of £E. 16,368,000 and a total expenditure of 
£E.i4,28o,ooo, a surplus of £E.2,o88,ooo. The annual growth of 
revenue for the previous five years averaged over £6.500,000. 
About one-third of the annual revenue is derived from the land tax ; 
customs and tobacco duties yield about £3,000,000, and an equal or 
larger amount is received from railways and other revenue-earning 
departments. The chief items of ordinary expenditure are tribute 
and debt charges, the expenses of the civil administration, of the 
Egyptian army (between £500,000 and £600,000 yearly), of the 
revenue-earning departments and of pensions. 

It will be convenient here to summarize the position of the 
Egyptian debt at the close of 1905, that is at the period immediately 
following the liquidation of the Dai'ra loan. In a previous table it 
has been shown that under the Law of Liquidation of 1880 the total 
debt was £98,640,000. In 1883, the first complete year after the 
British occupation, the capital of the debt — then exclusively held 
by the public — was £96,457,000. In 1885 the Guaranteed loan, the 
nominal capital of which was £9,424,000, was issued, and in 1891 
the debt reached its maximum figure of £106,802,000. At that 
period the charge for interest and sinking fund was £4,127,000. On 
the 31st of December 1905 the total capital of the debt was as 
follows : — 

Guaranteed 3% £7,849,000 

Preference 3j% 31,128,000 

Unified 4% 55,972,000 

Domains 4$% ii535.°oo 

Total . . £96,484,000 
The charge on account of interest and sinking fund was £3,709,000. 
Thus the capital of the debt in 1905 stood at almost the exact figure 
it did in 1883, although by borrowing and conversion operations 
nearly £17,000,000 had in the meantime. been added to the capital. 
This reduction was brought about by surplus revenue, and by the 
operation of the sinking fund in the case of the Guaranteed loan, 
while £15,729,000 had been wiped out by the sale of Dai'ra and 
Domains property. These figures do not, however, indicate fully the 
prosperity of the country, for although the nominal amount of 
the capital was practically identical in 1883 and 1905, in the latter 
year the Egyptian government or the Caisse held stock (bought 
with surplus revenue) to the value of £8,770,000. The amount of 
debt in the hands of the public was therefore only £87,714,000, that 
is to say £8,743,000 less than in 1883, while the interest charge to be 
borne by the taxpayer of Egypt was £3,378,000, being £890,000 
less than in 1 883. The charge amounts to about 40 % of the national 
expenditure. On the other hand, Egypt is not now weighed down 
with a huge warlike expenditure. There is no navy to support, 
and the army costs but 7 % of the total expenditure. 

Authorities. — A concise view of the financial situation in 1877 
will be found in J. C. McCoan's Egypt as it is (London n.d.). Mr 
Cave's report is printed in an appendix. The subsequent history 
of Egyptian finance is told in the following blue-books, &c. : — 
Correspondence respecting the State Domains of Egypt (1883); State- 
ment of the Revenue and Expenditure of Egypt, together viiih a List 
of the Egyptian Bonds and the Charges for their Services (1885); 




Reports on the Finances of Egypt, by the British agent, yearly from 
1888; Convention . . . relative to the Finance of Egypt, signed at 
London, March 18, 1885 ; Khedivial decree of the 28th November 1904 ; 
Compte gSnSral de I' administration des finances, issued yearly at Cairo. 
Consult also the works of Lord Cromer, Lord Milner, and Sir A. 
Colvin cited under § History, last section. (E. Go. ; F. R. C.) 

The Egyptian Army. 
The fellah soldier has been aptly likened to a bicycle, which 
although incapable of standing up alone, is very useful while 

under the control of a skilful master. It is generally 
history. believed that the successes gained in the time of the 

Pharaohs were due to foreign legions; and from 
Cambyses to Alexander, from the Ptolemies to Antony (Cleo- 
patra), from Augustus to the 7 th century, throughout the 
Arab period, and from Saladin's dynasty down to the middle of 
the 13th century, the military power of Egypt was dependent 
on mercenaries. The Mamelukes (slaves), imported from the 
eastern borders of the Black Sea and then trained as soldiers, 
usurped the government of Egypt, and held it till 1517, when 
the Ottomans began to rule. This form of government, speaking 
generally, endured till the French invasion at the end of the 18th 
century. British and Turkish troops drove the French out after 
an occupation of two years, the British troops remaining till 1803. 
Then Mehemet Ali, a small tobacconist of Kavala, Macedonia, 
coming with Albanian mercenaries, made himself governor, and 
later (18 n), by massacring the Mamelukes, became the actual 
master of the country, and after seven years' war brought Arabia 
under Egypt's rule. He subdued Nubia and Sennar in 1820-22; 
and then, requiring a larger army, he obtained instructors from 
France. To them were handed over 1000 Turks and Circassians 
to be trained as officers, who later took command of 30,000 
Sudanese. These died so rapidly in Egypt from pneumonia 1 
that Mehemet Ali conscripted over 250,000 fellahin, and in so 
arbitrary a fashion that many peasants mutilated themselves 
to avoid the much-dreaded service. The common practice 
was to place a small piece of nitrate of silver into the eye, which 
was then kept tightly bandaged till the sight was destroyed. 
Battalions were then formed of one-eyed men, and of soldiers 
who, having cut off their right-hand fingers, were made to shoot 
from the left shoulder. Every man who could not purchase 
exemption, with the exception of those living in Cairo, Alexandria 
and Suez, on becoming 19 years old was liable nominally to 12 
years' service; but many men were kept for 30 or 40 years, 
in spite of constant appeals. Nevertheless the experiment 
succeeded. The docile, yet robust and hardy peasants, under 
their foreign leaders, gained an unbroken series of successes in 
the first Syrian War; and after the bloody battle of Konia 
(1832), where the raw Turkish army was routed and the grand 
vizier taken prisoner, it was only European intervention which 
prevented the Egyptian general, Ibrahim Pasha, from marching 
unopposed to the Bosphorus. The defeat of the Turkish army 
at Nizib (Nezeeb or Nisib), in the second Syrian War (1839), 
showed that it was possible to obtain favourable military results 
with Egyptians" when stiffened by foreigners and well commanded. 
Ibrahim, the hero of Konia, declared, however, that no native 
Egyptian ought to rise higher than the rank of sergeant; and 
in the Syrian campaigns nearly all the officers were Turks or 
Circassians, as were several non-commissioned officers. In the 
cavalry and artillery many of the privates were foreigners, 
numbers of the janissaries who escaped the massacre at Stamboul 
(1832) having joined Mehemet Ali's army. 

In the reign of Abbas, who succeeded Mehemet Ali, the 
Egyptian troops were driven from Nejd, and the Wahhabi 
state recovered its independence. The next viceroy, Said, began 
as an ardent soldier, but took to agriculture, and at his death 
(1863) 3000 men only were retained under arms. Ismail, on 
succeeding, immediately added 27,000 men, and in seven years 
was able to put 100,000 men, well equipped, in the field. He 
sent 10,000 men to help to suppress a rebellion in Crete, and 

1 Similar mortality, though on a smaller scale, recurred in 1889, 
when Sudanese battalions coming from Suakin were detained 
temporarily in Cairo. 

conquered the greater part of the (Nile) Sudan; but an ex- 
pedition of 11,000 men, sent to Abyssinia under Prince Hasan 
and Rateb Pasha, well equipped with guns and all essentials, 
was, in two successive disasters (1875 and 1876), practically 
destroyed. The education of Egyptians in continental cities 
had not produced the class of leaders who led the fellahin to 
victory at Konia. 

Ismail's exactions from the Egyptian peasantry reacted on 
the army, causing discontent; and when he was tottering on 
the throne he instigated military demonstrations against his 
own government, and, by thus sapping the foundations of 
discipline, assisted Arabi's revolution; the result was the battle 
of Tell el-Kebir, the British occupation, and the disbandment 
of the army, which at that time in Egypt proper consisted 
of 18,000 men, Ismail had collected 500 field-guns, 200 Arm- 
strong cannon, and had created factories of warlike and other 
stores. These latter were conducted extravagantly, and badly 

In January 1883, Major-General Sir Evelyn Wood, V.C., 
was given £200,000, and directed to spend it in raising a fellahin 
force of 6000 men for the defence of Egypt. He was 
assisted at first by 26 officers, amongst whom were Nation ~ 
two who later became successively sirdars — Colonel 
F. Grenfell, commanding a brigade, and Lieutenant H. Kitchener, 
R.E., second in command of the cavalry regiment. There were 
four batteries, eight battalions, and a camel company. Each 
battalion of the 1st infantry brigade had three British mounted 
officers, Turks and Egyptians holding the corresponding positions 
in the battalions of the 2nd Brigade. The sirdar selected these 
native officers from those of Arabi's followers who had been 
the least prominent in the recent mutiny; non-commissioned 
officers who had been drill-instructors in the old army were 
recalled temporarily, but all the privates were conscripted from 
their villages. The earlier merciless practice had been in theory 
abolished by a decree based on the German system, published 
in 1880; but owing to defective organization, and internal 
disturbances induced by Khedive Ismail's follies, the law had 
not been applied, and the 6000 recruits collected at Cairo in 
January 1883 represented the biggest and strongest peasants 
who could not purchase exemption by bribing the officials 
concerned. The difficulties experienced in applying the 1880 
decree were great, but the perseverance of British officers gave 
the oppressed peasants, in 1885, an equitable law, which has 
been since improved by the decree of 1900. General considera- 
tions later caused the sirdar to allow exemption by payment 
of (Badalia) £20 before ballot. This tax, which is popular 
amongst the peasantry, produced in 1906 £E. 150,000, and over 
£250,000 in 1908. This is a marked indication of the increasing 
prosperity of the fellahin. A portion of the badalia is expended 
in the betterment of the soldier's position. He is no longer 
drafted into the police on completing his army service, but goes 
free at the end of five years with a gift of £E.20. The sirdar is 
allowed, moreover, to use £20,000 per annum of the badalia for 
the improvement of the education of the rank and file. As an 
experiment the police is now a voluntary service, except in 
Alexandria and Cairo, for which cities peasants are conscripted 
for the police under army conditions. The recruiting super- 
intending committee, travelling through districts, supervise 
every ballot, and work under stringent rules which render 
systematic bribery difficult. The recruits who draw unlucky 
numbers at 19 years of age are seldom called up till they are 
23, when they are summoned by name and escorted by a police- 
man to Cairo. To prevent substitution on the journey each 
recruit wears a string girdle sealed in lead. The periods of service 
are: with the colours, 5 years; in the reserve, 5 years, during 
which time they may be called up for police service, manoeuvres, 
&c. The pay is £E.3, 14s. per annum for all services, and the 
liberal scale of rations of meat, bread and rice remains as before 
in theory, but in practice the value of pay and food received is 
greatly enhanced. So also with the pension and promotion 
regulations. They were in 1882 sufficiently liberal on paper, 
but had never been carried into effect. 




The efforts of 48 American officers, who under Gen. C. P. Stone 
zealously served Ismail, had entirely failed to overcome Egyptian 
venality and intrigue; and in spite of the military schools, with 
3 {.ompiehensive syllabus, the only perceptible difference between 
the Egyptian officer and private in 1879 consisted, according 
to one of the Americans, in the fact that the first was the product 
of the harem, and the second of the field. Marshal Marmont, 
writing in 1839, mentions the capacity of the Egyptians for 
endurance; and it was tested in 1883, especially in the 2nd 
Brigade, since its officers (Turks and Egyptians), anxious to 
excel as drill-masters, worked their men not only from morn 
till eve, but also by lamplight in the corridors of the barracks. 
On the 31st March 1883, ten weeks after the arrival of the first 
draft of recruits, about 5600 men went through the ceremonial 
parade movements as practised by the British guards in Hyde 
Park, with unusual precision. The British officers had acquired 
the words of command in Turkish, as used in the old army, an 
attempt to substitute Egyptian words having failed owing to 
lack of crisp, sharp-sounding words. As the Egyptian brigadier, 
who had spent some years in Berlin, spoke German fluently, 
and it was also understood by the senior British officers, that 
language was used for all commands given by the sirdar on 
that special parade. The British drill-book, minus about one- 
third of the least serviceable movements, was translated by an 
English officer, and by 1900 every necessary British official 
book had been published in English and Arabic, except the new 
Recruiting Law (1885) and a manufacturing manual, for which 
French and Arabic editions are in use. The discipline of the 
old army had been regulated by a translation of part of the Code 
Napoleon, which was inadequate for an Eastern army, and the 
sirdar replaced it by the British Army Act of 1881, slightly 
modified, and printed in Arabic. 

The task undertaken by the small body of British officers 
was difficult. There was not one point in the former administra- 
tion of the army acceptable to English gentlemen. That there 
had been no adequate auxiliary departments, without which 
an army cannot move or be efficient, was comparatively a minor 
difficulty. To succeed, it was essential that the fellah should 
be taught that discipline might be strict without being oppressive, 
that pay and rations would be fairly distributed, that brutal 
usage by superiors would be checked, that complaints would be 
thoroughly investigated, and impartial justice meted out to 
soldiers of all ranks. An epidemic of cholera in the summer 
of 1883 gave the British officers their first chance of acquiring 
the esteem and confidence of their men, and the opportunity 
was nobly utilized. While the patient fellah, resigned to the 
decrees of the Almighty, saw the ruling Egyptian class hurry 
away from Cairo, he saw also those of his comrades who were 
stricken tenderly nursed, soothed in death's struggles, and in 
many cases actually washed, laid out and interred by their new 
self-sacrificing and determined masters. The regeneration of 
the fellahin army dates from that epidemic. 

When the Egyptian Army of the Delta was dispersed at 
Tell el-Kebir, the khedive had 40,000 troops in the Sudan, 
scattered from Massawa on the Red Sea to 1 200 m. towards the 
west, and from Wadi Haifa, 1500 m. southward to Wadelai, 
near Albert Nyanza. These were composed of Turks, Albanians, 
Circassians and some Sudanese. Ten thousand fellahin, collected 
in March 1883, mainly from Arabi's former forces, set out from 
Duem, 100 m. south of Khartum, in September 1883, under 
Hicks Pasha, a dauntless retired Indian Army officer, to vanquish 
the Mahdi. They disappeared in the deserts of Kordofan, 
where they were destroyed by the Mahdists about 50 m. south 
of El Obeid. In the wave of successful rebellion, except at 
Khartum, few of the Egyptian garrisons were killed when the 
posts fell, long residence and local family ties rendering easy 
their assimilation in the ranks of the Mahdists. 

Baker Pasha, with about 4000 constabulary, who were old 
soldiers, attempted to relieve Tokar in February 1884. He was 
attacked by 1200 tribesmen and utterly routed, losing 4 Krupp 
guns, 2 machine guns and 3000 rifles. Only 1400 Egyptians 
escaped the slaughter. 

The sirdar made ail attempt to raise a battalion of Albanians, 
but the few men obtained mutinied when ordered to proceed 
to the Sudan, and it was deemed advisable, after the ringleaders 
had been executed, to abandon the idea, and rely on blacks to 
stiffen the fellahin. Then the 9th (Sudanese) Battalion was 
created for service at Suakin, and four others having been 
successively added, these (with one exception — at Gedaref) 
have since borne the brunt of all the fighting which has been 
done by the khedivial troops. The Egyptian troops in the 
operations near Suakin behaved well; and there were many 
instances of personal gallantry by individual soldiers. In the 
autumn of 1884, when a British expedition went up the Nile to 
endeavour to relieve the heroic Gordon, besieged in Khartum, 
the Egyptians did remarkably good work on the line of com- 
munication from Assiut to Korti, a distance of 800 m., and the 
training and experience thus gained were of great value in all 
subsequent operations. The honesty and discipline of the 
fellah were shown to be undoubtedly of a high order. When the 
crews of the whale-boats were conveying stores, the forwarding 
officers tried to keep brandy and such like medical comforts 
from the European crews, coffee and tea from Canadian voyageurs 
and sugar from Kroo boys. The only immaculate carrier was 
the Egyptian. A large sum of specie having failed under British 
escort to reach Dongola, an equivalent sum was handed to an 
Egyptian lieutenant of six months' service, with 10 men, and 
duly reached its destination. 

Twelve years later the standard of honesty was unimpaired, 
and the British officers had imparted energy and activity into 
Egyptians of all ranks. The intelligent professional knowledge 
of the native officers, taught under British gentlemen, and the 
constant hard work cheerfully rendered by the fellah soldiers, 
were the main factors of the success achieved at Omdurman on 
the 2nd of September 1898. The large depots of stores at 
Assuan, Haifa and Dongola could only be cursorily supervised 
by British officers, and yet when the stores were received at the 
advance depot the losses were infinitesimal. 

By nature the fellah is unwarlike. Born in the valley of a 
great river, he resembles in many respects the Bengali, who 
exists under similar conditions; but the Egyptian character 
has proved capable of greater improvement. He is ofEgyp- 
stronger in frame, and can undergo greater exertion. t,a " JS 
Singularly unemotional, he stood steady at Tell el- 
Kebir after Arabi Pasha and all his officers, from general to sub- 
altern, had fled, and gave way only when decimated by the 
British field artillery firing case shot. At El Teb, however, in 
1884 he allowed himself to be slaughtered by tribesmen formerly 
despised, and only about one-fourth of the force under General 
Valentine Baker escaped. Baker Pasha's force was termed 
constabulary, yet his men were all old soldiers, though new to 
their gallant leader and to the small band of their brave but 
strange British officers. Since that fatal day, however, many 
of the fellahin have shown they are capable of devoted conduct, 
and much has been done to raise in the soldiers a sense of self- 
respect, and, in spite of centuries of oppression, of veracity. 
The barrack-square drill was smart under the old system, but 
there was no fire discipline, and all individuality was crushed.' 
Now both are encouraged, and the men, receiving their full 
rations, are unsurpassable in endurance at work and in marching. 
All the troops present in the surprise fight when the Dervish 
force was destroyed at Firket in June 1896 had covered long 
distances, and one battalion (the 10th Sudanese) accomplished 
90 m. within 72 hours, including the march back to railhead 
immediately after the action. The troops under Colonel Parsons, 
Royal Artillery, who beat the Dervishes at Gedaref, were so 
short of British officers that all orders were necessarily given in 
Arabic and carried to commanders of units by Arabs. While 
an Egyptian battalion was attacking in line, it was halted to 
repel a rush from the rear, and front and rear ranks were simul- 
taneously engaged, firing in opposite directions — yet the fellahin 
were absolutely steady; they shot well and showed no signs of 
trepidation. On the other hand, neither was there any exultation 
after their victory. It has been aptly said " the fellah would 





make an admirable soldier if he only wished to kill some one!" 
The fellahin furnish three squadrons, five batteries, three garrison 
artillery companies and nine battalions. 

The well-educated Egyptian officer, with his natural aptitude 
for figures, does subordinate regimental routine carefully, and 
works well when supervised by men of stronger character. The 
ordinary Egyptian is not self-reliant or energetic by nature, and, 
like most Eastern people, finds it difficult to be impartial where 
duty and family or other personal relations are in the balance. 
The black soldier has, on the other hand, many of the finest 
fighting qualities. This was observed by British officers, from 
the time of the preliminary operations about Kosha and at the 
action near Ginnis in December 1885 down to the brilliant 
operations in the pursuit of the Mahdists on the Blue Nile after 
the action of Gedaref (subsequent to the battle of Omdurman), 
and the fighting in Kordofan in 1890, which resulted in the death 
of the khalifa and his amirs. 

Black soldiers served in the army of Mehemet AH, but their 
fighting value was not then duly appreciated. Prior to the death 
of the khalifa, many of his soldiers deserted to join their brethren 
who had been captured by the sirdar's troops, during the gradual 
advance up the Nile. After 1899 many more enlisted: the 
greater number were Shilluks and Dinkas coming from the 
country between Fashoda and the equatorial provinces, but a 
proportion came from the western borders of the Sudan, and some 
from Wadai and Bornu. Many were absolute savages, difficult 
to control, wayward and thoughtless like children. Sudanese 
are very excitable and apt to get out of hand; unlike the fellahs 
they are not fond of drill, and are slow to acquire it; but their 
dash, pugnacious instincts and desire to close with an enemy, 
are valuable military qualities. The Sudanese, moreover, shoot 
better than the fellahin, whose eyesight is often defective. The 
Sudanese captain can seldom read or write, and is therefore 
in the hands of the Egyptian-born company quartermaster- 
sergeant as regards pay and clothing accounts. He is slow, and 
as a rule has little knowledge of drill. Nevertheless he is self- 
reliant, much respected by his men, and can be trusted in the 
field to carry out any orders received from his British officer. 
The most efficient companies in the Sudanese battalions are 
apparently those in which the captain is a black and the lieu- 
tenants are Egyptians. 

In 1908 the Egyptian army, with a total establishment of 18,000, 
consisted of three squadrons of cavalry (one composed of Sudanese) 
each numbering 116 men; four batteries of field artillery and a 
Maxim battery, horses and mules being used, with a total strength of 
1257 of all ranks; the camel corps, 626 of all ranks (fellahin and 
Sudanese) ; and nine fellahin and six Sudanese infantry battalions, 
10,631 of all ranks. Every battalion receives two additional com- 
panies on mobilization and takes the field with six companies. 

The armament of the infantry is Martini-Henry rifle and bayonet ; 
of the cavalry, lance, sword and carbine. 

There are seven gunboats on the Nile. . 

The medical department (reorganized in 1883 by Surgeon-Major 
J. G. Rogers at the time of the cholera epidemic) controls in peace 
fourteen station hospitals, and in war furnishes a mobile field hos- 
pital to each brigade. There are also veterinary station hospitals. 
The supply department controls mills at Tura, Haifa and Khartum. 

The stringent system of selecting British officers, originated by the 
first sirdar in 1883, is shown by the fact that of the 24 employed in 
creating the army, 14 rose to be generals. The competition for 
employment in the army is still severe. In 1908 there were 140 
British warrant and non-commissioned officers. Four of the fellahin 
battalions were officered by Orientals; in the other five, British 
officers commanded. Seven officers were employed with the artillery, 
six with the camel corps. Each of the Sudanese battalions had four 
British officers, and each squadron of cavalry one. Twelve medical 
and two veterinary officers are also employed departmentally, as 
well as officers acting as directors of supply, &c. Since the assump- 
tion of command by the third sirdar, Colonel (afterwards Lord) 
Kitchener, the ordnance, supply and engineer services have been 
separately administered, and a financial secretary is charged with 
the duty of preparing the budget, making contracts, &c. The total 
annual expenditure is £500,000. 

The reorganized military school system under British control, for 
supplying officers, dates from 1887. The course lasts for about two 
years, and two hundred students can be accommodated. After the 
reconquest of the Sudan one-fourth of the cadets in the military 
school of Cairo were Sudanese. Later, however, the Sudanese cadets 
were transferred to a branch school at Khartum. 

The army raised by the first sirdar in January 1883 was highly 
commended for its work on the line of communication in 1 884-1 885, 
and its artillery and camelry distinguished themselves in the action 
at Kirbekan in February 1885. Colonel Sir Francis Grenfell suc- 
ceeded General Sir Evelyn Wood in March 1885, and while under 
his command the army continued to improve, and fought successful 
actions at Gemaiza, Argin, Toski and Tokar. At Toski the Dervish 
force was nearly annihilated. In March 1892 Colonel Kitchener 
succeeded General Sir Francis Grenfell, and four years later began his 
successful reconquest of the Sudan. In June 1896, owing to the 
indefatigable exertions of Major Wingate, a perfected system of . 
secret intelligence enabled the sirdar to bring an overwhelming 
force of 6 to 1 against the Dervish outpost at Firket and destroy it. 
In September 1896 a skirmish at Hafir, with similarly successful 
tactics, gave the British commander the possession of Dongola. 
On the 7th of August 1897 Colonel Hunter surprised and annihilated 
a weak Dervish garrison at Abu Hamed, to which place, by the 31st 
of October 1897, a railway had been laid across the Nubian desert 
from Wadi Haifa, a distance of 230 m., the " record " construction 
of 5300 yds surveyed, embanked and laid in one day having been 
attained. On the 26th of December 1897 the Italian troops handed 
over Kassala to Colonel Parsons, R.A. On the 8th of April 1898 
a British division, with the Egyptian army, destroyed the Dervish 
force under the amir Mahmud Ahmed, on the Atbara river. On the 
2nd of September the khalifa attacked the British-Egyptian troops 
at Kerreri (near Omdurman), and being routed, his men dispersed; 
Khartum was occupied, and on the 19th of September the Egyptian 
flag was rehoisted at Fashoda. On the 22 nd of September 1898 
Gedaref was taken from the amir Ahmed Fedil by Colonel Parsons, 
and on the 26th of December the army of Ahmed Fedil was finally 
defeated and dispersed near Roseires. The khalifa's army, reduced 
to an insignificant number, after several unsuccessful engagements 
withdrew to the west of the Nile, where it was attacked, on the 24th 
of November 1899, after a forced march by Colonel Wingate, and 
annihilated. The khalifa himself was killed ; while the victor, who 
had joined the Egyptian army in 1883 as aide-de-camp to the first 
sirdar, in December 1899 became the fourth sirdar, as Major-General 
Sir F. R. Wingate, K.C.B., K.C.M.G., D.S.O., &c. (E. Wo.) - 

II. Ancient Egypt 

A. Exploration and Research— -Owing to its early develop- 
ment of a high civilization with written records, its wealth, 
and its preservative climate, Egypt is the country which most 
amply repays archaeological research. It is especially those 
long ages during which Egypt was an independent centre of 
culture and government, before its absorption in the Persian 
empire in the 6th century B.C., that make the most powerful 
appeal to the imagination and can often justify this appeal by 
the splendour of the monuments representing them. Later, 
however, the history of Hellenism, the provincial history of the 
Roman empire, the rise of Christianity and the triumph of Islam 
successively receive brilliant illustration in Egypt. 

As early as the 17th century travellers began to bring home 
specimens of ancient Egyptian handiwork: a valuable stele 
from Sakkara of the beginning of the Old Kingdom was presented 
to the Ashmolean Museum at Oxford in 1683. In the following 
century the Englishman R. Pococke (1704-1765), the Dane 
F. L. Norden (1708-1742), both travelling in 1737, and others 
later, planned, described or figured Egyptian ruins in a primitive 
way and identified many of the sites with cities named in classical 
authors. Napoleon's great military expedition in 1798 was 
accompanied by a scientific commission including artists and 
archaeologists, the results of whose labours fill several of the 
magnificent volumes of the Description de I'Egypte. The 
antiquities collected by the expedition, including the famous 
Rosetta stone, were ceded to the British government at the 
capitulation of Alexandria, in 1801. Thereafter Mehemet Ali 
threw Egypt freely open to Europeans, and a busy traffic in 
antiquities began, chiefly through the agency of the consuls of 
different powers. From the year 1820 onwards the growth of 
the European collections was rapid, and Champollion's decipher- 
ments (see below, § " Language and Writing") of the hiero- 
glyphic inscriptions, dating from 1821, added fresh impetus to 
the fashion of collecting, in spite of doubts as to their trust- 
worthiness. In 1827 a combined expedition led by Champolhon 
and Rosellini was despatched by the governments of France 
and Tuscany, and accomplished a great deal of valuable work 
in copying scenes and inscriptions. But the greatest of such 
expeditions was that of Lepsius, under the auspices of the 




Prussian government, in 1842-1845. Its labours embraced not 
only Egypt and Nubia (as far as Khartum) but also the Egyptian 
monuments in Sinai and Syria; its immense harvest of material 
is of the highest value, the new device of taking paper impres- 
sions or " squeezes " giving Lepsius a great advantage over his 
predecessors, similar to that which was later conferred by the 
photographic camera. 

A new period was opened in Egyptian exploration in 1858 
when Mariette was appointed director of archaeological works 
in Egypt, his duties being to safeguard the monuments and 
prevent their exploitation by dealers. As early as 1835 Mehemet 
Ali had given orders for a museum to be formed; little however, 
was accomplished before the whole of the resulting collection 
was given away to the Archduke Maximilian of Austria in 1855. 
Mariette, who was appointed by the viceroy Said Pasha at 
the instance of the French government, succeeded in making 
his office effective and permanent, in spite of political intrigues 
and the whims of an Oriental ruler; he also secured a building 
on the island of Bulak (Bulaq) for a viceregal museum in which 
the results of his explorations could be permanently housed. 
Supported by the French interest, the established character 
of this work as a department of the Egyptian government 
(which also claims the ancient sites) has been fully recognized 
since the British occupation. The " Service of Antiquities " 
now boasts a large annual budget and employs a number of 
European and native officials — a director, curators of the museum, 
European inspectors and native sub-inspectors of provinces 
(at Luxor for Upper Egypt and Nubia, at Assiut for Middle 
Egypt and the Fayum, at Mansura for Lower Egypt, besides a 
European official in charge of the government excavations at 
Memphis) . The museum, no lo'nger the property of an individual, 
was removed in 1889 from the small building at Bulak to a disused 
palace at Giza, and since 1902 has been established at Kasr-en-Nil, 
Cairo, in a special building, of ample size and safe from fire and 
flood. In the year 1881 the directorship of the museum was 
temporarily undertaken by Prof. Maspero, who resumed it in 
1899. The admirably conducted Archaeological Survey of the 
portion of Nubia threatened by the raising of the Assuan dam 
is in the charge of another department — the Survey department, 
directed for many years up to 1909 by Captain H. G. Lyons. 
Non-official agencies (supported by voluntary contributions) 
for exploration in Egypt comprise the Egypt Exploration Fund, 
started in London in 1881, with its two branches, viz. the Archaeo- 
logical Survey (1890) for copying and publishing the monuments 
above ground, and the Graeco-Roman Branch (1897), well known 
through the brilliant work in Greek papyri of B. P. Grenfell and 
A. S. Hunt; and the separate Research Account founded by 
Professor W. M. Flinders Petrie in London (University College) 
in 1896, and since 1905 called the British School of Archaeology 
in Egypt (see especially Memphis). The Mission archSologique 
fratiQaise au Caire, established as a school by the French govern- 
ment in 1881, was re-organized in 1901 on a lavish scale under the 
title Institut fratiQais d'archeologie orientate du Caire, and domi- 
ciled with printing-press and library in a fine building near the 
museum. As the result of an excellent bargain, it was afterwards 
removed to the Munira palace in the south-east part of the city. 
An archaeologist is attached to the German general consulate to 
look after the interests of German museums, and is director of 
the German Institute of Archaeology. The Orient-Gesellschaft 
(German Orient-Society) has worked in Egypt since 1901 with 
brilliant results. Excavations and explorations are also con- 
ducted annually by the agents of universities and museums in 
England, America and Germany, and by private explorers, 
concessions being granted generally on the terms that the 
Egyptian government shall retain half of the antiquities dis- 
covered, while the other half remains for the finders. 

The era of scientific excavation began with Flinders Petrie's 
work at Tanis in 1883. Previous explorers kept scientific aims 
in view, but the idea of scientific archaeology was not realized 
by them. The procedure in scientific excavation is directed 
to collecting and interpreting all the information that can be 
obtained from the excavation as to the history and nature of 

the site explored, be it town, temple, house, cemetery or individual 
grave, wasting no evidence that results from it touching the 
endless problems which scientific archaeology affords — whether 
in regard to arts and crafts, manners and customs, language, 
history or beliefs. This is a totally different thing from mere 
hunting for inscriptions, statues or other portable objects which 
will present a greater or less value in themselves even when torn 
from their context. Such may, of course, form the greater 
part of the harvest and working material of a scientific excavator; 
their presence is most welcome to him, but their complete absence 
need be no bar to his attainment of important historical results. 
The absence of scientific excavation in Egypt was deplored by 
the Scottish archaeologist Alexander Henry Rhind (1833-1863), 
as early as 1862. Since Flinders Petrie began, the general level 
of research has gradually risen, and, while much is shamefully 
bad and destructive, there is a certain proportion that fully 
realizes the requirements of scientific archaeology. 

Antiquities, Sites, &*c. — The remains for archaeological in- 
vestigation in Egypt may be roughly classified as material and 
literary: to the latter belong the texts on papyri and the 
inscriptions, to the former the sites of ancient towns with the 
temples, fortifications and houses; remains of roads, canals, 
quarries and other matters falling within the domain of ancient 
topography; the larger monuments, as obelisks, statues, stelae, 
&c. ; and finally the small antiquities — utensils, clothes, weapons, 
amulets, &c. Where moisture can reach the antiquities their 
preservation is no better in Egypt than it would have been in 
other countries; for this reason all the papyri in the Delta have 
perished unless they happen to have been charred by fire. A 
terrible pest is a kind of termite which is locally abundant and 
has probably visited most parts of Egypt at one time or another, 
destroying all dead vegetable or animal material in the soil that 
was not specially protected. 

In Lower Egypt the cities built of crude brick were very 
numerous, especially after the 7th century B.C., but owing to 
the value of stone very few of their monuments have escaped 
destruction: even the mounds of rubbish which marked their 
sites furnish a valuable manure for the fields and in consequence 
are rapidly disappearing. Granite and other hard stones, having 
but a limited use (for millstones and the like), have the best 
chance of survival. At Bubastis, Tanis, Behbeit (Iseum) and 
Heliopolis considerable stone remains have been discovered. 
In the north of the Delta wherever salt marshes have prevented 
cultivation in modern times, the mounds, such as those of 
Pelusium, still stand to their full height, and the more important 
are covered with ruins of brjck structures of Byzantine and 
Arab date. 

Middle and Upper Egypt were less busy and prosperous in 
the later ages than Lower Egypt. There was consequently 
somewhat less consumption of the old stone-work. Moreover, 
in many places equally good material could be obtained without 
much difficulty from the cliffs on both sides of the Nile. Yet 
even the buried portions of limestone buildings have seldom been 
permitted to survive on the cultivated land; the Nubian sand- 
stone of Upper Egypt was of comparatively little value, and, 
generally speaking, buildings in that material have fallen into 
decay rather than been destroyed by quarrying. 

Starting from Cairo and going southward we have first the 
great pyramid-field, with the necropolis of Memphis as its centre; 
stretching from Abu Roash on the north to Lisht on the south, 
it is followed by the pyramid group of Dahshur, the more isolated 
pyramids of Medum and Illahtin, and that of Hawara in the 
Fayum. On the east bank are the limestone quarries of Turra 
and Masara opposite Memphis. South of the Fayum on the 
western border of the desert are the tombs of Deshasha, Meir 
and Assiut, and on the east bank those of Beni Hasan, the rock- 
cut temple of Speos Artemidos, the tombs of El Bersha and 
Sheikh Said, the tombs and stelae of El Amarna with the alabaster 
quarries of Hanub in the desert behind them, and the tombs of 
Deir el Gebrawi. Beyond Assiut are the tombs of Dronka and 
Rifa, the temples of Abydos and Dendera, and the tombs, &c, 
at Akhmlm and Kasr es Saiyad. Farther south are the stupendous 

S y 

r 1 a 


*.D e 

s e r 


Longitude East 30 of Greenwich 

Emtry W*l)tcr •& 




ruins of Thebes on both sides of the river, the temple of Esna, the 
ruins and tombs of El Kab, the temple of Edfu, the quarries of 
Silsila and the temple of Ombos, followed by the inscribed rocks 
of the First Cataract, the tombs and quarries of Assuan and the 
temples of Philae. 

In Nubia, owing to the poverty of the country and its scanty 
population, the proportion of monuments surviving is infinitely 
greater than in Egypt. Here are the temples of Debod, the 
temple and quarries of Kertassi, the temples of Kalabsha, Bet 
el Wali, Dendur, Gerf Husen, Dakka, Maharaka, Es-Sebu'a, 
'Amada and Derr, the grottos of Elles ya, the tombs of Anlba, 
the temple of Ibrlm, the great rock-temples of Abu-Simbel, the 
temples at Jebel Adda and Wadi Haifa, the forts and temples of 
Semna, the temples of Amara (Meroitic) and Soleb. Beyond are 
the Ethiopian temples and pyramids of Jebel Barkal and the other 
pyramids of Napata at Tangassi, &c, the still later pyramids of 
Meroe at Begerawia, and the temples of Mesauwarat and Naga 
reaching to within 50 m. of Khartum. 

Outside the Nile valley on the west are temples- in the Great 
and Little Oases and the Oasis of Ammon: on the east quarries 
and stelae on the Hammamat road to the Red Sea, and mines 
and other remains at Wadi Maghara and Serabit el Khadim in 
the Sinai peninsula. In Syria there are tablets of conquest on 
the rocks at the mouth of the Nahr el Kelb. 

Of the collections of Egyptian antiquities in public museums, 
those of the British Museum, Leiden, Berlin, the Louvre, Turin 
were already very important in the first half of the 19th century, 
also in a less degree those of Florence, Bologna and the Vatican. 
Most of these have since been greatly increased and many others 
have been created. By far the largest collection in the world 
is that at Cairo. In America the museums and universities of 
Boston, Chicago, Philadelphia, San Francisco and New York 
have collections of greater or less interest. Besides these the 
museums of Edinburgh, Liverpool, Manchester and Oxford are 
noteworthy in Great Britain for their Egyptian antiquities, 
as are those of St Petersburg, Vienna, Marseilles, Munich, 
Copenhagen, Palermo and Athens; there are also collections 
in most of the British colonies. Private collections are numerous. 

Literary Records. — In estimating the sources of information 
regarding pre-Christian Egypt, the native sources, first opened 
to us by Champollion, are infinitely the most important. With 
very few exceptions they are contemporary with the events 
which they record. Of the composition of history and the 
description of their own manners and customs by the Egyptians 
for posterity, few traces have reached our day. Consequently 
the information derived from their monuments, in spite of their 
great abundance, is of a fortuitous character. For one early 
papyrus that survives, many millions must have perished. If 
the journals of accounts, the letters and business documents, 
had come down to us en masse, they would no doubt have yielded 
to research the history and life of Egypt day by day; but those 
that now represent a thousand years of the Old Kingdom and 
Middle Kingdom together would not half fill an ordinary muni- 
ment chest. A larger proportion of the records on stone have 
survived, but that an event should be inscribed on stone depends 
on a variety of circumstances and not necessarily on its importance. 
There may seem to be a great abundance of Egyptian monuments, 
but they have to cover an enormous space of time, and even in 
the periods which are best represented, gravestones recording 
the names of private persons with a prayer or two are scarcely 
material for history. A scrap of annals has been found extending 
from the earliest times to the Vth Dynasty, as well as a very 
fragmentary list of kings reaching nearly to the end of the 
Middle Kingdom, to help out the scattered data of the other 
monuments. As to manners and customs, although we possess 
no systematic descriptions of them from a native source, the 
native artists and scribes have presented us with exceptionally 
rich materials in the painted and sculptured scenes of the tombs 
from the Old and Middle Kingdoms and the New Empire. For 
the Deltaic dynasties these sources fail absolutely, the scenes being 
then either purely religious or conventional imitations of the 
earlier ones. 

Fortunately the native records are largely supplemented by 
others: valuable information comes from cuneiform literature, 
belonging to two widely separated periods. The first group is 
contemporary with the XVIIIth and XlXth Dynasties and 
consists in the first place of the Tell el Amarna tablets with 
others related to them, containing the reports of governors 
of the Syrian possessions of Egypt, and the correspondence of 
the kings of Babylon, Assur, Mitanni and Khatti (the Hittites) 
with the Pharaohs. The sequel to this is furnished by Winckler's 
discovery of documents relating to Rameses II. of the XlXth 
Dynasty in the Hittite capital at Boghaz Keui (see also Hittites 
and Pteria). The other group comprises the annals and iiK 
scriptions of the Assyrian kings Esarhaddon and Assur-bani-pal, 
recording their invasions of Egypt under the XXVth Dynasty. 
There are also a few references to Egypt of later date down to 
the reign of Darius. In Hebrew literature the Pentateuch, the 
historical books and the prophets alike contain scanty but 
precious information regarding Egypt. Aramaic papyri written 
principally by Jews of the Persian period (5th century B.C.)' 
have been found at Syene and Memphis. 

Of all the external sources the literary accounts written in 
Greek are the most valuable. They comprise fragments of the 
native historian Manetho, the descriptions of Egypt in Herodotus 
and Diodorus, the geographical accounts of Strabo and Ptolemy, 
the treatise of Plutarch on Isis and Osiris and other monographs 
or scattered notices of less importance. Our knowledge of the 
history of Alexander's conquest, of the Ptolemies and of the 
Roman occupation is almost entirely derived from Greek sources, 
and in fact almost the same might be said of the history of 
Egypt as far back as the beginning of the XXVIth Dynasty. 
The non-literary Greek remains in papyri and inscriptions 
which are being found in great abundance throw a flood of 
light on life in Egypt and the administration of the country from 
the time of Ptolemy Philadelphus to the Arab conquest. On 
the other hand, papyri and inscriptions in Latin are of the 
greatest rarity, and the literary remains in that language are of 
small importance for Egypt. 

Arabic literature appears to be entirely barren of authentic 
information regarding the earlier condition of the country. 
Two centuries of unchallenged Christianity had broken almost 
completely the traditions of paganism, even if the Moslems had 
been willing to consider them, either in their fanciful accounts 
of the origins of cities, &c, or elsewhere. 

B. The Country in Ancient Times. — The native name of 
Egypt was Kemi (KMT), clearly meaning " the black land," 
Egypt being so called from the blackness of its alluvial soil 
(cf. Plut. Dels, el Os. cap. 33): in poetical inscriptions Kemi is 
often opposed to Toskri, " the red land," referring to the sandy 
deserts around, which however, would probably be included 
in the term Kemi in its widest sense. Egypt is called in Hebrew 
Mizraim, d;i?p, possibly a dual form describing the country in 
reference to its two great natural and historical divisions of 
Upper Egypt and Lower Egypt: but Mizraim (poetically 
sometimes Mazor) often means Lower Egypt, Upper Egypt 
being named Pathros, " the south land." In Assyrian the name 


was Musri, Misri: in Arabic it is Misr, j~»-s, pronounced Masr in 

the vulgar dialect of Egypt. These names are certainly of 
Semitic origin and perhaps derive from the Assyrian with the 
meaning "frontier-land" (see Mizraim). Winckler's theory 
of a separate Musri immediately south of Palestine is now 
generally rejected (see, for instance, Ed. Meyer, Die Israeliten 
und ihre Nachbarstdmme, 455). The Greek Alyvirros (Aegyptus) 
occurs as early as Homer; in the Odyssey it is the name of the 
Nile (masc.) as well as of the country (fern.) : later it was con- 
fined to the country. Its origin is very obscure (see Pietsch- 
mann in Pauly-Wissowa, Realencyclopddie, s.v. "Aigyptos"). 
Brugsch's derivation from Hakeptah, a name of the northern 
capital, Memphis, though attractive, is taconfirmed. 

Egypt normally included the whole of the Nile valley from 
the First Cataract to the sea; pure Egyptians, however, formed 
the population of Lower Nubia above the Cataract in prehistoric 




times; at some periods also the land was divided into separate 
kingdoms, while at others Egypt stretched southward into 
Nubia, and it generally claimed the neighbouring Libyan deserts 
and oases on the west and the Arabian deserts on the east to the 
shore of the Red Sea, with Sinai and the Mediterranean coast 
as far as Rhinocorura (El Arlsh). The physical features in 
ancient times were essentially the same as at the present day. 
The bed of the -Nile was lower: it appears to have risen by 
its own deposits at a rate of about 4 in. in a century. In the 
north of the Delta, however, there was a sinking of the land, 
in consequence of which the accumulations on some of the 
ancient sites there extend below the present sea-level. On the 
other hand at the south end of the Suez canal the land may 
have risen bodily, since the head of the Gulf of Suez has been 
cut off by a bank of rock from the Bitter lakes, which were 
probably joined to it in former days. The banks of the Nile 
and the islands in it are subject to gradual but constant altera- 
tion — indeed, several ancient sites have been much eroded or 
'destroyed — and the main volume of the stream may in course of 
time be diverted into what has previously been a secondary 
channel. According to the classical writers, the mouths or 
branches of the Nile in the Delta were five in number (seven 
including two that were artificial): now there are only two. 
In Upper Egypt the main stream tended as now to flow along 
the eastern edge of the valley, while to the west was a parallel 
stream corresponding to the Bahr Yusuf. From the latter 
a canal or branch led to the Lake of Moeris, which, until the 
3rd century B.C., filled the deep depression of the Fayum, but 
is now represented only by the strongly brackish waters of the 
Birket eLKerun, left in the deepest part. The area of alluvial 
land has probably not changed greatly in historic times. The 
principal changes that have occurred are due to the grip which 
civilization has taken upon the land in the course of thousands 
of years, often weakening but now firmer than ever. In early 
days no doubt the soil was cultivated in patches, but gradually 
a great system of canals was organized under the control of the 
central government, both for irrigation and for transport. 
The wild flora of the alluvial valley was probably always re- 
stricted and eventually was reduced almost to the " weeds of 
cultivation," when every acre of soil, at one period of the year 
under water, and at another roasted under the burning heat of a 
semi-tropical sun, was carefully tilled. The acacia abounded 
on the borders of the valley, but the groves were gradually cut 
down for the use of the carpenter and the charcoal-burner. 
The desert was full of wild life, the balance of nature being 
preserved by the carnivorous animals preying on the herbivorous; 
trees watered by soakage from the Nile protected the under- 
growth and encouraged occasional rainfall. But this balance 
was upset by the early introduction of the goat and later of 
the Camel, which destroyed the sapling trees, while the grown 
ones fell to the axe of the woodcutter. Thus in all probability 
the Egyptian deserts have become far poorer in animals and 
trees than they were in primitive times. Much of Lower Egypt 
was left in a wilder state than Upper Egypt. The marshy lands 
in the north were the resort of fishermen and fowlers, and the 
papyrus, the cultivation of which was a regular industry, pro- 
tected an abundance of wild life. The abandonment of papyrus 
culture in the 8th century a.d., the neglect of the canals, and 
the inroads of the sea, have converted much of that country 
into barren salt marsh, which only years of draining and washing 
can restore to fertility. 

The rich alluvial deposits of the Nile which respond so readily 
to the efforts of the cultivator ensured the wealth of the country. 
Moulded into brick, without burning, this black clay also supplied 
the common wants of the builder, and even the palaces of the 
greatest kings were constructed of crude brick. For more lasting 
and ambitious work in temples and tombs the materials could 
be obtained from the rocks and deserts of the Nile valley. The 
chief of these was limestone of varying degrees of fineness, com- 
posing the cliffs which lined the valley from the apex of the Delta 
to the neighbourhood of El Kab; the best quality was obtained 
on the east side opposite Memphis from the quarries of Turra 

and Masara. From El Kab southward its place was taken by 
Libyan sandstone, soft and easily worked, but unsuitable for 
fine sculpture. These two were the ordinary building stones. 
In the limestone was found the flint or chert used for weapons and 
instruments in early times. For alabaster the principal quarry 
was that of Hanub in the desert 10 m. behind El Amarna, but it 
was obtained elsewhere in the limestone region, including a spot 
near Alexandria. A hard and fine-grained quartzite sandstone 
was quarried at Jebel Ahmar behind Heliopolis, and basalt 
was found thence along the eastern edge of the Delta to near 
the Wadi Tumilat. Red granite was obtained from the First 
Cataract, breccia and diorite were quarried from very early times 
in the Wadi Hammamat, on the road from Coptos to the Red 
Sea, and porphyry was brought, chiefly in Roman times but 
also in the prehistoric age, from the same region at Jebel Dokhan. 

Egypt was poor in metals. Gold was obtained chiefly from 
Nubia: iron was found in small quantities in the country and 
at one time was worked in the neighbourhood of Assuan. Some 
copper was obtained in Sinai. Of stones that were accounted 
precious Sinai produced turquoise and the Egyptian deserts 
garnet, carnelian and jasper. 

The native supply of wood for industrial purposes 'was ex- 
ceedingly bad: there was no native wood long enough and 
straight enough to be used in joiners' work or sculpture without 
fitting and patching: palm trees were abundant, and if the 
trees could be spared, their split stems could be used for roofing. 
For boatbuilding papyrus stems and acacia wood were employed, 
and for the best work cedar-wood was imported from Lebanon. 

Egypt was isolated by the deserts and the sea. The Nile 
valley afforded a passage by ship or on foot into Nubia, where, 
however, little wealth was to be sought, though gold and rarities 
from the Sudan, such as ivory and ebony, came that way and an 
armed raid could yield a good spoil in slaves and cattle. The 
poverty-stricken and barbarous Nubians were strong and 
courageous, and gladly served in Egypt as mercenary soldiers 
and police. Through the oases also ran paths to the Sudan by 
which the raw merchandise of the southern countries could be 
brought to Egypt. Eastward, roads led through the Arabian 
mountains to the Red Sea, whence ships made voyages to the 
incense-bearing land of Puoni (Punt) on the Somali coast of 
Africa, rich also in gold and ivory. Thymines of Sinai could be 
reached either by sea or by land along the route of the Exodus. 
The roads to Syria skirted the east border of the Delta and then 
followed the coast from near Pelusium through El Arlsh and 
Gaza. A secondary road branched off through the Wadi Tumilat, 
whence the ways ran northwards to Syria and southwards to 
Sinai. On the Libyan side the oasis of Slwa could be reached 
from the Lake of Moeris or from Terrana (Terenuthis) , or by the 
coast route which also led to the Cyrenaica. The Egyptians 
had some traffic on the Mediterranean from very remote times, 
especially with Byblus in Phoenicia, the port for cedar-wood. 

Of the populations surrounding Egypt the negroes (Nehsi) 
in the south (Cush) were the lowest in the scale of civilization: 1 
the people of Puoni and of Libya (the Tehen, &c.) were pale in 
colour and superior to the negroes, but still show no sign of 
a high culture. The Syrians and the Keftiu, the latter now 
identified with the Cretans and other representatives of the 
Aegean civilization, are the only peoples who by their elaborate 
clothing and artistic products reveal themselves upon the 
ancient Egyptian monuments as the equals in culture of the 
Egyptian nation. 

The Egyptians seem to have applied no distinctive name to 
themselves in early times : they called themselves proudly romi 
(RMTW), i.e. simply " men," " people," while the despised races 
around them, collectively S'SWT, " desert-peoples," were dis- 
tinguished by special appellations. The races of mankind, 
including the Egyptians, were often called the Nine Archers. 
Ultimately the Egyptians, when their insularity disappeared 
under the successive dominations of Ethiopia, Assyria and 
Persia, described themselves as rem-n-Kemi, " men of Egypt." 
Whence the population of Egypt as we trace it in prehistoric 
and historic times came, is not certain. The early civilization 




of Egypt shows remarkable coincidences with that of Babylonia, 
the language is of a Semitic type, the religion may well be a 
compound of a lower African and a higher Asiatic order of ideas. 
According to the evidence of the mummies, the Egyptians were 
of slender build, with dark hair and of Caucasian type. Dr 
Elliott Smith, who has examined thousands of skeletons and 
mummies of all periods, finds that the prehistoric population of 
Upper Egypt, a branch of the North African-Mediterranean- 
Arabian race, changed with the advent of the dynasties to a 
stronger type, better developed than before in skull and muscle. 
This was apparently due to admixture with the Lower Egyptians, 
who themselves had been affected by Syrian immigration. There- 
after little further change is observable, although the rich lands 
of Egypt must have attracted foreigners from all parts. The 
Egyptian artists of the New Empire assigned distinctive types 
of feature as well as of dress to the different races with which they 
came into contact, Hittites, Syrians, Libyans, Bedouins, negroes, 

The people of Egypt were not naturally fierce or cruel. In- 
tellectually, too, they were somewhat sluggish, careless and 
unbusinesslike. In the mass they were a body of patient 
labourers, tilling a rich soil, and hating all foreign lands and ways. 
The wealth of their country gave scope for ability within the 
population and also attracted it from outside: it enabled the 
kings to organize great monumental enterprises as well as to 
arm irresistible raids upon the inferior tribes around. Urged 
on by necessity and opportunity, the Egyptians possessed 
sufficient enterprise and originating power to keep ahead of 
their neighbours in most departments of civilization, until the 
more warlike empires of Assyria and Persia overwhelmed them 
and the keener intellects of the Greeks outshone them in almost 
every department. The debt of civilization to Egypt as a 
pioneer must be considerable, above all perhaps in religious 
thought. The moral ideals of its nameless teachers were high 
from an early date: their conception of an after-life was ex- 
ceedingly vivid: the piety of the Egyptians in the later days 
was a matter of wonder and scoffing to their contemporaries; 
it is generally agreed that certain features in the development of 
Christianity are to be traced to Egypt as their birthplace and 

For researches into the ethnography of Egypt and the neigh- 
bouring countries, see W. Max Miiller, Asien und Europa nachden 
altdg. Inschriften (Leipzig, 1893), Egyptological Researches (Washing- 
ton, 1906); for measurements of Egyptian skulls, Miss Fawcett 
in Biometrika (1902) ; A. Thomson and D. Randall-Maclver, The 
Ancient Races of the Thebaid (Oxford, 1905) (cf. criticisms in Man, 
1905 ; and for comparisons with modern measurements, C. S. Myers, 
Journ. Anthropological Institute, 1905, 80). W. Flinders Petrie has 
collected and discussed a series of facial types shown in prehistoric 
and early Egyptian sculpture, Journal Anthropological Institute, 
1901 , 248. For Elliott Smith's results see The Cairo Scientific Journal, 
No. 30, vol. iii., March 1909. 

Divisions. — In ancient times Egypt was divided into two 
regions, representing the kingdoms that existed before Menes. 
Lower Egypt, comprising the Delta and its borders, formed 
the " North Land," To-meh, and reached up the valley to include 
Memphis and its province or " nome," while the remainder of the 


Egyptian Nile valley was " the South,' Shema \ SM'W 

The south, if only as the abode of the sun, always had the preced- 
ence over the north in Egypt, and the west over the east. Later 
the two regions were known respectively as P-to-res (Pathros), 
" the south land," and P-to-meh, " the north land." In practical 
administration this historic distinction was sometimes observed, 
at others ignored, but in religious tradition it had a firm hold. 
In Roman times a different system marked off a third region, 
namely Middle Egypt, from the point of the Delta southward.' 
Theoretically, as its name Heptanomis implies, this division 
contained seven nomes, actually from the Hermopolite on the 
south to the Memphite on the north (excluding the Arsinoite 
according to the papyri). Some tendency to this existed earlier. 
Egypt to the south of the Heptanomis was the Thebais, called 
P-tesh-en-Ne, " the province of Thebes," as early as the XXVIth 

Dynasty. The Thebais was much under the influence of the 
Ethiopian kingdom, and was separated politically in the troubled 
times of the XXIIIrd Dynasty, though the old division into 
Upper and Lower Egypt was resumed in the XXVIth Dynasty. 
If Upper and Lower Egypt represented ancient kingdoms, 
the nomes have been thought to carry on the traditions of tribal 
settlements. They are found in inscriptions as early as the end 
of the IHrd Dynasty, and the very name of Thoth, and that 
of another very ancient god, are derived from those of two con- 
tiguous nomes in Lower Egypt. The names are written by special 

emblems placed on standards, such as an ibis 

2^, a hare r~* , a feathered crown M 
v sir > " ^ T"' 

a jackal 

^f\' ,r -^T' «^-' a Slstn »n JL_> 

a blade v-^-, &c, suggesting tribal badges. Some nomes having 

a common badge but distinguished as " nearer " or " further," 
i.e " northern " or " southern," have simply been split, as they 
are contiguous: in one case, however, corresponding " eastern " 
and " western " Harpoon nomes are widely separated on opposite 
sides of the Delta. In a few cases, such as " the West," " the 
Beginning of the East," it is obvious that the names are derived 
solely from their geographical situation. It is quite possible 
that the divisions are geographical in the main, but it seems 
likely that there were also religious, tribal and other historical 
reasons for them. How their boundaries were determined is not 
certain: in Upper Egypt in many cases a single nome embraced 
both sides of the river. The number and nomenclature of the 
nomes were never absolutely fixed. In temples of Ptolemaic and 
Roman age the full series is figured presenting their tribute to 
the god, and this series approximately agrees with the scattered 
data of early monuments. The normal number of the nomes 
in the sacred lists appears to be 42, of which 22 belonged to 
Upper Egypt and 20 to Lower Egypt. In reality again these 
nome-divisions were treated with considerable freedom, being 
split or reunited and their boundaries readjusted. Each nome 
had its metropolis, normally the seat of a governor or nomarch 
and the centre of its religious observances. During the New 
Empire, except at the beginning, the nomes seem to have been 
almost entirely ignored: under the Deltaic dynasties (except of 
course in the traditions of the sacred writing) they were named 
after the metropolis, as " the province (tosh) of Busiris," " the 
province of Sais," &c: hence the Greek names Bouo-ipirrjs 
voixos, &c. The Arsinoite nome was added by the Ptolemies 
after the draining of the Lake of Moeris (q.v.), and in the later 
Ptolemaic and the Roman times many changes and additions 
to the list must have been made. In Christian texts the 
" provinces " appear to have been very numerous. 

See H. Brugsch, Geographische Inschriften altagyptischer Denk- 
mdler (3 vols., Leipzig, 1 857-1 860), and for the nomes on monuments 
of the Old Kingdom, N. de G. Davies, Mastaba of Ptahhetep and 
Akhethetep (London, 1901), p. 24 et sqq. 

King and Government. — The government of Egypt was 
monarchical. The king (for titles see Pharaoh) was the head of 
the hierarchy: he was himself divine and is often styled " the 
good god," and was the proper mediator between gods and men. 
He was also the dispenser of office, confirmer of hereditary titles 
and estates and the fountain of justice. Oaths were generally 
sworn by the " life " of the king. The king wore special head- 
dresses and costumes, including the crowns of Upper A an( j 

Lower Egypt V (often united fV ), and the cobra upon his 

forehead. Females were admitted to the succession, but very 
few instances occur before the Cleopatras. The most notable 
Pharaonic queen in her own right was Hatshepsut in the XVIIIth 
Dynasty, but her reign was ignored by the later rulers even of 
her own family. A certain Nitocris of about the VHIth Dynasty 
and Scemiophris of the Xllth Dynasty are in the lists, but are 
quite obscure. Yet inheritance through the female line was 
fully recognized, and marriage with the heiress princess was 
sought by usurpers to legitimate the claims of their offspring. 




Often, especially in the Xllth Dynasty, the king associated his 
heir on the throne with him to ensure the succession. 

From time to time feudal conditions prevailed: the great 
landowners and local princes had establishments of their own 
on the model of the royal court, and were with difficulty kept in 
order by the monarch. In rare cases during the Middle Kingdom 
(inscriptions in the tomb of Ameni at Beni Hasan, graffiti in the 
quarries of Hanub) documents were dated in the years of reign 
of these feudatory nobles. Under the Empire all power was 
again centralized in the hands of the Pharaoh. The apportion- 
ment of duties amongst the swarm of officials varied from age 
to age, as did their titles. Members of the royal family generally 
held high office. Under the Empire Egypt was administered 
by a vast bureaucracy, at the head of which, responsible to the 
king, was the vizier, or sometimes two viziers, one for Upper 
Egypt, the other for Lower Egypt (in which case the former, 
stationed at Thebes, had the precedence). The duties of the 
vizier and the procedure in his court are detailed in a long 
inscription which is repeated in three tombs of the XVIIIth 
Dynasty at Thebes (Breasted, Records, ii. § 663 et seqq.). The 
strictest impartiality was enjoined upon him, and he was advised 
to hold aloof from the people in order to preserve his authority. 
The office of vizier was by no means a sinecure. All the business 
of the country was overlooked by him — treasury, taxation, army, 
law-courts, expeditions of every kind. Egypt was the vast 
estate of Pharaoh, and the vizier was the steward of it. 

Army. — The youth of Egypt was liable to be called upon 
for service in the field under the local chiefs. Their training 
consisted of gymnastic and warlike exercises which developed 
strength and discipline that would be as useful in executing 
public works and in dragging large monuments as in strictly 
military service. They were armed in separate companies with 
bows and arrows, spears, daggers and shields, and the officers 
carried battle-axes and maces. The army, commanded in chief 
by Una under the Vlth Dynasty for raids in Sinai or Palestine, 
comprised levies from every part of Egypt and from Nubia, 
each under its own leader. Under the New Empire, when Egypt 
was almost a military state, the army was a more specialized 
institution, the art of war in siege and strategy had developed, 
divisions were formed with special standards, there were regiments 
armed with battle-axes and scimitars, and chariots formed an 
essential part of the host. Egyptian cavalry are not represented 
upon the monuments, and we hear little of such at any time. 
Herodotus divides the army into two classes, the Calasiries and 
the Hermotybies; these names, although he was not aware of it, 
mean respectively horse- and foot-soldiers, but it is possible 
that the former name was only traditional and had charac- 
terized those who fought from chariots, a mode of warfare 
that was obsolete in Herodotus's own day: as a matter of 
fact both classes are said to have served on the warships of 
Xerxes' fleet. 

Arms and Armour. — From the contents of graves and other 
remains, and the sculptured and painted scenes, an approximate 
idea can be obtained of the weapons of the Egyptians at all 
periods from the prehistoric age onwards. Only a few points 
are here noted. Stone mace-heads are found in the earliest 
cemeteries, together with flint implements that may be the heads 
of lances, &c, and thin leaf -shaped daggers of bronze. Stone 
arrow-heads are common on the surface of the desert. Thin 
bronze arrow-heads appear at an early date; under the Empire 
they are stouter and furnished with a tang, and later still, 
towards the Greek period, they are socketed (often three-sided), 
or, if of iron, still tanged. The wooden club, a somewhat primi- 
tive weapon, seems to have been considered characteristic of 
foreigners from very early times, and, in scenes dating from the 
Middle Kingdom, belong principally to the levies from the 
surrounding barbarians. The dagger grew longer and stouter, 
but the sword made its appearance late, probably first in the 
hands of the Sherdana (Sardinian?), mercenaries of the time of 

Rameses II. A peculiar scimitar, khopsh J) , is characteristic of 
the Empire. Slings are first heard of in Egyptian warfare in the 

8th century B.C. The chariot was doubtless introduced with 
the horse in the Hyksos period; several examples have been 
discovered in the tombs of the New Kingdom. Shields were 
covered with ox-hide and furnished with round sighting-holes 
above the middle. Cuirasses of bronze scales were worn by the 
kings and other leaders. The linen corslets of the Egyptian 
soldiery at a later" time were famous, and were adopted by the 
Persian army. According to the paintings of the Middle Kingdom 
in the tombs of Beni Hasan, the battlements of brick fortresses 
were attacked and wrenched away with long and massive spears. 
No siege engines are depicted, even in the time of the Empire,, 
and the absence of original representations after the XXth 
Dynasty renders it difficult to judge the advances made in the 
art of war during the first half of the last millennium B.C. The 
inscription of Pankhi, however, proves that in the 8th century 
approaches and towers were raised against the walls of besieged 

Priesthood. — The priesthood was in a great degree hereditary, 
though perhaps not essentially so. In each temple the priests 
were divided into four orders (until Ptolemy Euergetes added a 
fifth) , each of which served in turn for a lunar month under the 
chief priest or prophet. They received shares of the annual 
revenues of the temple in kind, consisting of linen, oil, flesh, 
bread, vegetables, wine, beer, &c. The " divine servants " or 
" prophets " had residences assigned them in the temple area 
In late times the priests were always shaven, and paid the greatest 
attention to cleanliness and ceremonial purity already implied 
in their ancient name. Fish and beans then were abhorred by 
them. Among the priests were the most learned men of Egypt, 
but probably many were illiterate. For the Hellenistic period 
see W. Otto, Priester und Tempel im hellenistichen Agypten 
(Leipzig, 1905 foil). 

For ancient Egyptian life and civilization in all departments, the 
principal work is Ad. Erman, Life in Ancient Egypt, translated by 
H. M. Tirard (London, 1894), (the original Agypten und dgypti- 
schss Leben im Altertum, 2 vols., was published in 1885 at Tubingen) ; 
G. Maspero, Life in Ancient Egypt and Assyria, translated by A. P. 
Morton (London, 1892), {Lectures historiques, Paris, 1890); also 
J. G. Wilkinson, Manners and Customs of the Ancient Egyptians, new 
ed. by S. Birch (3 vols., London, 1878). The annual Archaeological 
Reports of the Egypt Exploration Fund contain summaries of the 
work done each year in the several departments of research. 

Of the innumerable publications of Egyptian monuments, scenes 
and inscriptions, C. R. Lepsius, Denkmaler aus Agypten und 
Athiopien (Berlin, 1849-1859), and Memoirs of the Archaeological 
Survey of the Egypt Exploration Fund, may be specified. For 
antiquities in museums there is the sumptuous Catalogue general des 
antiquites egyptiennes du musee de Caire; for excavations the 
Memoirs of the Egypt Exploration Fund, of the Research Account, 
of the British School of Archaeology, of the Liverpool School of 
Archaeology, of the Deutsche Orient-Gesellschaft, of the Hearst 
Egyptian Expedition, of the Theodore M. Davis excavations (Tombs 
of the Kings). 

Trade and Money. — There is little evidence to show how buying 
and selling were carried on in ancient Egypt. A unique scene 
in a tomb of the IVth Dynasty, however, shows men and women 
exchanging commodities against each other — fish, fish-hooks, 
fans, necklaces, &c. Probably this was a market in the open air 
such as is held weekly at the present time in every considerable 
village. Rings of metal, gold, silver and bronze played some part 
in exchange, and from the Hyksos period onwards formed the 
usual standards by which articles of all kinds might be valued. 
In the XVIIIth Dynasty the value of meat, &c, was reckoned 
in gold; somewhat later copper seems the commonest standard, 
and under the Deltaic dynasties silver. But barter must have 
prevailed much longer. The precious metals were kept in the 
temples under the tutelage of the deities. During the XXVth 
and XXVIth Dynasties silver of the treasury of Harshafe (at 
Heracleopolis Magna) was commonly prescribed in contracts, 
and in the reign of Darius we hear of silver of the treasury of 
Ptah (at Memphis). Aryandes, satrap of Egypt, is said by 
Herodotus to have been punished by Darius for coining money 
of equal fineness with that of the king in Persia: thus coinage 
had then begun in Egypt. But the early coins that have been 
found there are mainly Greek, and especially Athenian, and it 
was not until the introduction of a regular currency in the three 




metals under the Ptolemies that much use was made of coined 

Corn was the staple produce of Egypt and may have been 
exported regula'rly, and especially when there was famine in 
other countries. In the Tell el-Amarna letters the friendly 
kings ask Pharaoh for " much gold." Papyrus rolls and fine 
linen were good merchandise in Phoenicia in the ioth century 
B.C. From the earliest times Egypt was dependent on foreign 
countries to supply its wants in some degree. Vessels were 
fashioned in foreign stone as early as the 1st Dynasty. All silver 
must have been imported, and all copper except a little that 
the Pharaohs obtained from the mines of Sinai. Cedar wood 
was brought from the forests of Lebanon, ivory, leopard skins 
and gold from the south, all kinds of spices and ingredients of 
incense from Somaliland and Arabia, fine linen and beautifully 
worked vessels from Syria and the islands. Such supplies might 
be obtained by forcible raiding or as tribute of conquered 
countries, or perhaps as the free offerings of simple savages 
awed by the arrival of ships and civilized well-armed crews, 
or again by royal missions in which rich gifts on both sides were 
exchanged, or lastly by private trading. For deciding how large 
a share was due to trade, there is almost no evidence. But there 
are records of expeditions sent out by the king to obtain the 
rarities of different countries, and the hero of the Story of the 
Shipwrecked Sailor was upon this quest. Egyptian objects of 
the age of the XVIIIth Dynasty are found in the Greek islands 
and on the mainland among remains of the Mycenaean epoch, 
and on the other hand the products of the workshops of Crete 
and other centres of that culture are found in Egypt and are 
figured as " tribute of the Keftiu " in the tomb-paintings, 
though we have no information of any war with or conquest of 
that people. It must be a case of trade rather than tribute here 
and in like instances. According to the papyrus of Unamun at 
the end of the weak XXth Dynastypaymentforcedarwasinsisted 
on by the king of Byblus from the Egyptian commissioner, and 
proofs were shown to him of payment having been made even 
in the more glorious times of Egypt. Trade both internal and 
external must have been largely in the hands of foreigners. 
It is impossible to say at what period Phoenician traffic by sea 
with Egypt began, but it existed as early as the Illrd Dynasty. 
In the time of Herodotus much wine was imported from Syria 
and Greece. Amasis II. (c. 570 B.C.) established Naucratis as 
the centre of Greek trade in Egypt. Financial transactions by 
Jews settled at the southern extremity of Egypt, at Assuan, are 
found as early as the reign of Artaxerxes. 

Hunting, Fishing, &*c. — In the desert hunting was carried 
on by hunters with bows and arrows, dogs and nets to check 
the game. Here in ancient times were found the oryx, addax, 
ibex, gazelle, bubale, ostrich, hyena and porcupine, more rarely 
the wild ox and wild sheep (O. tragelaphus) . All of these were 
considered fit for the table. The lion, leopard and jackal were 
not eaten. Pigeons and other birds were caught in traps, and 
quails were netted in the fields and on the sea-shore. In the 
papyrus marshes the hippopotamus was slain with harpoons, 
the wild boar, too, was probably hunted, and the sportsman 
brought down wild-fowl with the boomerang, or speared or 
angled for fish. Enormous quantities of wild-fowl of many sorts 
were taken in clap-nets, to be preserved in jars with salt. Fish 
were taken sometimes in hand-nets, butthe professional fisher- 
men with their draw-nets caught them in shoals. The fishing 
industry was of great importance: the annual catch in the Lake 
of Moeris and its canal formed an important part of the Egyptian 
revenue. The fish of the Nile, which were of many kinds (includ- 
ing mullets, &c, which came up from the sea), were split and 
dried in the sun: others were salted and so preserved. A supply 
of sea fish would be obtained off the coast of the Delta and at the 
mouth of the Lake Serbonis. 

Farming, Horticulture, &c. — The wealth of Egypt lay in its 
agriculture. The regular inundations, the ease of irrigating the 
rich alluvial flats, and the great heat of the sun in a cloudless 
sky, while limiting the natural flora, gave immense opportunities 
to the industrious farmer. The normal rise of the Nile was 

sixteen cubits at the island of Roda, and two cubits more or 
less caused a failure of the harvest. In the paintings we see 
gardens ' irrigated by handbuckets and shadufs; the latter 
(buckets hung on a lever-pole) were probably the usual means 
of raising water for the fields in ancient times, and still are 
common in Egypt and Nubia, although water-wheels have been 
known since the Ptolemaic age, if not earlier. Probably a certain 
amount of cultivation was possible all the year round, and there 
was perhaps a succession of harvests; but there was a pause 
after the main harvests were gathered in by the end of April, 
and from then till June was the period in which taxes were 
collected and loans were repaid. Under the Ptolemaic regime 
the records show a great variety of crops, wheat and barley being 
probably the largest (see B. P. Grenfell and A. S. Hunt, Tebtunis 
Papyri, i. 560; J. P. Mahaffy and J. G. Smyly, Petrie Papyri, 
iii. p. 205). Earlier the boti, in Greek b\bpa (spelt? or durra ?) 
was the main crop, and earlier again inferior varieties of wheat 
and barley took the lead, with boti apparently in the second 
place. The bread was mainly made of boti, the beer of barley. 
There were green crops such as clover, and lentils, peas, beans, 
radishes, onions, lettuces (as a vegetable and for oil), castor oil 
and flax were grown. The principal fruit trees were the date 
palm, useful also for its wood and fibre, the pomegranate, fig 
and fig-sycamore. The vine was much cultivated in early times, 
and the vintage is a subject frequently depicted. Later the 
wine of the Mareotic region near Alexandria was celebrated even 
amongst Roman epicures. Papyrus, which grew wild in the 
marshes, was also cultivated, at least in the later ages: its stems 
were used for boat-building, and according to the classical 
authors for rope-making, as well as for the famous writing 
material. About the 8th century a.d. paper drove the latter 
out of use, and the papyrus plant quickly became extinct. 
The Indian lotus described by Herodotus is found in deposits 
of the Roman age. Native lotuses, blue and white, were much 
used for decoration in garlands, &c, also the chrysanthemum and 
the corn-flower. 

See chapters on plant remains by Newberry in W. M. F. Petrie, 
Hawara, Biakmu, and Arsinoe (London, 1889); Kahun, Gurob and 
Hawara (1890) ; V. Loret, La Flore pharaonique (2nd ed., Paris, 1892), 
and the authorities there cited. 

Domestic Animals and Birds.— The farmer kept up a large 
stock of animals: in the houses there were pets and in the temples 
sacred creatures of many kinds. Goats browsed on the trees 
and herbage at the edge of the desert. Sheep of a peculiar breed 
with horizontal twisted horns and hairy coat are figured on the 
earliest monuments: a more valuable variety, woolly with 
curved horns, made its appearance in the Middle Kingdom and 
pushed out the older form: sheep were driven into the ploughed 
fields to break the clods and trample in the seed. The oxen were 
long-horned, short-horned and polled. They drew the plough, 
trampled the corn sheaves round the circular threshing floor, 
and were sometimes employed to drag heavy weights. The pig 
is rarely figured and was less and less tolerated as the Egyptians 
grew in ceremonial purity. A [variety of wild animals caught in 
the chase were kept alive and fed for slaughter. Geese and 
ducks of different sorts were bred in countless numbers by the 
farmers, also pigeons and quails, and in the early ages cranes. 
The domestic fowl was unknown in Egypt before the Deltaic 
dynasties, but Diodorus in the first century B.C. describes how 
its eggs were hatched artificially, as they are at the present 
day. Bee-keeping, too, must have been a considerable industry, 
though dates furnished a supply of sweetening material. 

The farm lands were generally held at a rent from an overlord, 
who might according to times and circumstances be the king, 
a feudal prince, or a temple-corporation. The stock also might 
be similarly held, or might belong to the farmers. The ordinary 
beast of burden, even in the desert, was the ass. The horse seems 
to have been introduced with the chariot during the Hyksos 
period. It is thought that the camel is shown in rude figures of 
the earliest age, but it is scarcely traceable again before the 
XXVIth Dynasty. In the Ptolemaic period it was used for 
desert transport and gradually became common. Strange to say, 

4 6 



it is only very rarely that men are depicted riding on animals, 
and never before the New Kingdom. 

The dog was of many varieties as early as the Xllth Dynasty, 
when the greyhound and turnspit and other well-marked forms 
are seen. The cat was sometimes trained by the sportsman to 
catch birds. Monkeys were commonly kept as pets. The sacred 
beasts in the various temples, tame as far as possible, were of 
almost every conceivable variety, from the vulture to the swallow 
or the goose, from the lion to the shrew-mouse, from the hippo- 
potamus to the sheep and the monkey, from the crocodile to the 
tortoise and the cobra, from the carp to the eel; the scorpion 
and the scarab beetle were perhaps the strangest in this strange 
company of deities. 

For agriculture see J. J. Tylor and F. LI. Griffith, The Tomb of 
Paheri at El Kab, in the Xlth Memoir of the Egypt Exploration 
Fund. Together with hunting and fishing it is illustrated in many 
of the Memoirs of the Archaeological Survey of the same society. See 
also Lortet and M. C. Gaillard, La Faune de Vancienne 
Egypte (Lyons, 1905). 

Law. — No code of Egyptian laws has come down to us. 
Diodorus names a series of Egyptian kings who were law-givers, 
ending with Amasis (Ahmosi II.) and Darius. Frequent reference 
is made in inscriptions to customs andlawswhich were traditional, 
and perhaps had been codified in the sacred books. From time 
to time regulations on special points were issued by royal decree : 
a fragment of such a decree, directed by Horemheb of theXVIIIth 
Dynasty against oppression of the peasantry by officials and 
prescribing penalties, is preserved on a stela in the temple of 
Karnak, and enactments of Ptolemy Philadelphus and Euergetes 
II. are known from papyri. In the Ptolemaic age matters arising 
out of native contracts were decided according to native law by 
XaoKptrat, while travelling courts of xpt]na.TioTa.i representing 
the king settled litigation on Greek contracts and most other 
disputes. Affairs were decided in accordance with the code of 
the country, tjjs x&pas vofioi, the Greek code, ttoXltlkoI vojuoi, 
modelled, it would seem, on Athenian law or royal decrees, 
irpocrayfiara. " Native " law was still quoted in Roman times, 
but the significance of the expression remains to be ascertained. 
In ancient Egypt petitions were sent to the king or the great 
feudal landowners in whose territory the petitioner or his 
adversary dwelt or the injury was committed: courts were 
composed of royal or feudal officials, or in the New Kingdom 
of officials or responsible citizens. The right of appeal to the 
king probably existed at all times. The statement of the case 
and the evidence were frequently ordered to be put in writing. 
the evidence was supported by oath: in criminal cases, such as 
the harem conspiracy against Rameses III., torture of the accused 
was resorted to to extract evidence, the bastinado being applied 
on the hands and the feet. Penalties in the New Kingdom were 
death (by starvation or self-inflicted), fines, beating with a certain 
number of blows so as to open a specified number of wounds on 
as many different parts of the body {e.g. five wounds, i.e. on 
hands, feet and back?) , also cutting off the nose with banishment 
to Nubia or the Syrian frontier. In the times of the OldKingdom 
decapitation was in use, and a decree exists of the Middle King- 
dom degrading a nomarch of Coptos and his family for ever 
from his office and from the priesthood on account of services 
to a rival pretender. 

As to legal instruments: contracts agreed to in public or 
before witnesses and written on papyrus are found as early as 
the Middle Kingdom and perhaps belong to all historic times, 
but are very scarce until the XXVth Dynasty. Two wills exist 
on papyrus of the Xllth Dynasty, but they are isolated, and such 
are not again found among native documents, though they occur 
in Greek in the Ptolemaic age. The virtual will of a high priest 
of Ammon under the XXIInd Dynasty is put in the form of a 
decree of the god himself. 

From the time of the XXVth Dynasty there is a great increase 
in written documents of a legal character, sales, loans, &c, 
apparently due to a change in law and custom; but after the 
reign of Darius I. there is again almost a complete cessation 
until the reign of Alexander, probably only because of the dis- 
turbed condition of the country. Under Ptolemy Philadelphus 

Greek documents begin to be numerous: under Euergetes II. 
(Physcon) demotic contracts are particularly abundant, but they 
cease entirely after the first century of Roman rule. 

Marriage contracts are not found earlier than the XXVIth 
Dynasty. Women had full powers of inheritance (though not of 
dealing with their property), and succession through the mother 
was of importance. In the royal line there are almost certain 
instances of the marriage of a brother with an heiress-sister in 
Pharaonic times: this was perhaps helped by the analogy of 
Osiris and Isis: in the Ptolemaic dynasty it was an established 
custom, and one of the stories of Khamois, written in the 
Ptolemaic age, assumes its frequency at a very remote date. 
It would be no surprise to find examples of the practice in other 
ranks also at an early period, as it certainly was prevalent in the 
Hellenistic age, but as yet it is very difficult to prove its occur- 
rence. The native contracts with the wife gave to her child 
all the husband's property, and divorce or separation was pro- 
vided for, entailing forfeiture of the dowry. The " native law " 
of Roman times allowed a man to take his daughter away from 
her husband if the last quarrelled with him. 

Slavery is traceable from an early date. Private ownership 
of slaves, captured in war and given by the king to their captor 
or otherwise, is certainly seen at the beginning of the XVIIIth 
Dynasty. Sales of slaves occur in the XXVth Dynasty, and 
contracts of servitude are found in the XXVIth Dynasty and 
in the reign of Darius, appearing as if the consent of the slave 
was then required. Presumably at this late period there were 
eunuchs in Egypt, though adequate evidence of their existence 
there is not yet forthcoming. They must have originated among 
a more cruel people. That circumcision (though perhaps not 
till puberty) was regularly practised is proved by the mummies 
(agreeing with the testimony of Herodotus and the indications 
of the early tomb sculptures) until an edict of Hadrian forbade 
it: after that, only priests were circumcised. 

See A. H. Gardiner, The Inscription of Mes (frorn Sethe's Unter- 
suchungen zur Geschichte und Altertumskunde Agyptens, iv.) ; 
J. H. Breasted, Ancient Records, Egypt, passim, esp. i. § 190, 535 
et seqq., 773, ii. 54, 671, iii. 45, 367, iv. 416, 499, 795; F. LI. Griffith, 
Catalogue of the John Rylands Demotic Papyri; B. P. Grenfell and 
J. P. Mahaffy, Revenue Laws of Philadelphus (Oxford, 1896); 
B. P. Grenfell and A. S. Hunt, Tebtunis Papyri, part i. (London, 
1902) ; Bouche-Leclercq, Histoire des Lagides, tome iv. (Paris, 

Science.— The Egyptians sought little after knowledge for its 
own sake: they might indulge in religious speculation, but their 
science was no more than the knowledge of practical methods. 
Undoubtedly the Egyptians acquired great skillinthe application 
of simple means to the fulfilment of the most difficult tasks. 
But the books that have come down to us prove how greatly 
their written theoretical knowledge fell short of their practical 
accomplishment. The explanation of the fact may partly be 
that the mechanical and other discoveries of the most ingenious 
minds among them, when not in constant requisition by later 
generations, were misunderstood or forgotten, and even in other 
cases were preserved only as rules of thumb by the craftsmen 
and experts, who would jealously hide them as secrets of trade. 
Men of genius were not wanting in the long history of Egypt; 
two doctors, Imhotp (Imuthes), the architect of Zoser, in the 
IHrd Dynasty, and Amenophis (Amenhotp), son of Hap, the 
wise scribe under Amenophis III. in the XVIIIth, eventually 
received the honours of deification; and Hardadf under Cheops 
of the IVth Dynasty was little behind these two in the estimation 
of posterity. Such men, who, capable in every field, designed the 
Great Pyramids and bestowed the highest monumental fame on 
their masters, must surely have had an insight into scientific 
principles that would hardly be credited to the Egyptians from 
the written documents alone. 

Mathematics. — The Egyptian notation for whole numbers 
was decimal, each power of 10 up to 100,000 being represented 
by a different figure, on much the same principle as the Roman 
numerals. Fractions except f were all primary, i.e. with the 
numerator unity: in order to express such an idea as j% the 
Egyptians were obliged to reduce it to a series of primary 




fractions through double fractions t\"+t\+A+A+tV=4(t+ 
A+rb)+TV = 5+A+TS-=5+|+-^+T?+TiT; this opera- 
tion was performed in the head, only the result being written 
down, and to facilitate it tables were drawn up of the 
division of 2 by odd numbers. With integers, besides adding 
and subtracting, it was easy to double and to multiply by 10: 
multiplying and dividing by 5 and finding the i£ value were 
also among the fundamental instruments of calculation, and all 
multiplication proceeded by repetitions of these processes with 
addition, e.g. oX7 = (oX2X2) + (oX2)+o. Division was accom- 
plished by multiplying the divisor until the dividend was reached; 
the answer being the number of times the divisor was so multi- 
plied. Weights and measures proceeded generally on either a 
decimal or a doubling system or a combination of the two. 
Apart from a few calculations and accounts, practically all the 
materials for our knowledge of Egyptian mathematics before 
the Hellenistic period date from the Middle Kingdom. 

The principal text is the Rhind Mathematical Papyrus in the 
British Museum, written under a Hyksos king c. 1600 B.C.; un- 
fortunately it is full of gross errors. Its contents fall roughly into 
the following scheme, but the main headings are not shown in the 
original : — 

I. Arithmetic. — A. Tables and rule to facilitate the employment 
of fractions. 

(a) Table of the divisions of 2 by odd numbers from 3 to 99 

(e.g. 2 -Mi =J+-j l B ), see above. 
(6) Conversions of compound fractions (e.g. |Xi = i+fV)i with 

rule for finding f of a fraction. 

B. The " bread " calculation — a division by 10 of the units 1 to 9. 

C. "' Completing " calculations. 

(a) Adding multiples of a fraction to produce a more convenient 

fraction (perhaps connected with the use of palms and 
cubits in decoration in a proportion based on the number 8) . 

(b) Finding the difference between a given fraction and a given 

whole number. 

D. Ahe 1 or " mass "-problems (of the form x+~=a, to find the 
ahe x). 

E. Tooun- problems (tooun, " rising," seems to be the difference 
between the shares of two sets of persons dividing an amount 
between them on a lower and a higher scale). 

II. Geometry. — A. Measurement of volume (amounts of grain in 
cylindrical and rectangular spaces of different dimensions and vice 

B. Measurement of area (areas of square, circular, triangular, &c, 

C. Proportions of pyramids and other monuments with sloping 

III. Miscellaneous problems (and tables) such as are met with in 
bread-making, beer-making, food of live-stock, &c. &c. 

The method of estimating the area of irregular fields and the 
cubic contents of granaries, &c, is very faulty. It would be inter- 
esting to find material of later date, such as Pythagoras is reported 
to have studied. 

See A. Eisenlohr, Ein mathematisches Handbuch der alten Agypter 
(Leipzig, 1877) ; F. LI. Griffith, " The Rhind Mathematical Papyrus" 
in Proceedings of the Soc. of Biblical Archaeology, Nov. 1891, March, 
May and June 1894. 

Astronomy.— The brilliant skies of day and night in Egypt 
favoured the development of astronomy. A papyrus of the 
Roman period in the British Museum attributes the invention of 
horoscopes to the Egyptians, but no early instance is known. 
Professor Petrie has indeed suggested, chiefly on chronological 
grounds, that a table of stars on the ceiling of the Ramesseum 
temple and another in the tomb of Rameses VI. (repeated in 
that of Rameses IX. without alteration) were horoscopes of 
Rameses II. and VI.; but Mahler's interpretation of the tables 
on which this would rest appears to be false. Astronomy played 
a considerable part in religious matters for fixing the dates of 
festivals and determining the hours of the night. The titles of 
several temple books are preserved recording the movements 
and phases of the sun, moon and stars. The rising of Sothis 
(Sirius) at the beginning of the inundation was a particularly 
important point to fix in the yearly calendar (see below, 
§ " Chronology "). The primitive clock 2 of the temple time- 
keeper (horoscopus), consisting of a o>po\6yiov /cat <j>oivua 
(Clemens Alex. Strom., vi. 4. 35), has been identified with two 

1 Formerly transcribed hau or " heap "-problems. 

2 Clepsydras inscribed in hieroglyphic are found soon after the 
Macedonian conquest. 

inscribed objects in the Berlin Museum; these are a palm branch 
with a sight-slit in the broader end, and a short handle from 
which a plummet line was hung. The former was held close 
to the eye, the latter in the other hand, perhaps at arm's length. 
From the above-mentioned tables of culmination in the tombs 
of Rameses VI. and IX. it seems that for fixing the hours of the 
night a man seated on the ground faced the horoscopus in such a 
position that the line of observation of the Pole-star passed over 
the middle of his head. On the different days of the year each 
hour was determined by a fixed star culminating or nearly 
culminating in it, and the position of these stars at the time is 
given in the tables as " in the centre," " on the left eye," " on 
the right shoulder," &c. According to the texts, in founding or 
rebuilding temples the north axis was determined by the same 
apparatus, and we may conclude that it was the usual one for 
astronomical observations. It is conceivable that in ingenious 
and careful hands it might give results of a high degree of 

See L. Borchardt, " Ein altagyptisches astronomisches Instru- 
ment in Zeitschrift fur dgyptische Sprache, xxxvii. (1899), p. 10 • 
Ed. Meyer, Agyptische Chronologie, p. 36. Besides the sun and 
moon, five planets, thirty-six dekans, and constellations to which 
animal and other forms are given, appear in the early astronomical 
texts and paintings. The zodiacal signs were not introduced till the 
Ptolemaic period. See H. Brugsch, Die Agyptologie (Leipzig, 1891), 
pp. 315 et seqq., for a full account of all these. 

_ Medicine.— Except that splints are sometimes found on the 
limbs of bodies of all periods, at present nothing is known, from 
texts or otherwise, of the existence of Egyptian surgery or 
dentistry. For historical pathology the examination of mummies 
and skeletons is yielding good results. There is little sign of the 
existence of gout or of syphilitic diseases until late times (see 
Mummy) . A number of papyri have been discovered containing 
medical prescriptions. The earliest are of the XHth Dynasty 
from Kahun, one being veterinary, the other gynaecological. 
The finest non-religious papyrus known, the Ebers Papyrus, 
is a vast collection of receipts. One section, giving us some of 
" the mysteries of the physician," shows how lamentably crude 
were his notions of the constitution of the body. It teaches 
little more than that the pulse is felt in every part of the body, 
that there are vessels leading from the heart to the eyes, ears^ 
nose and all the other members, and that " the breath entering 
the nose goes to the heart and the lungs." The prescriptions 
are for a great variety of ailments and afflictions— diseases of 
the eye and the stomach, sores and broken bones, to make the 
hair grow, to keep away snakes, fleas, &c. Purgatives and 
diuretics are particularly numerous, and the medicines take the 
form of pillules, draughts, liniments, fumigations, &c. The 
prescriptions are often fanciful and may thus bear some absurd 
relation to the disease to be cured, but generally they would be 
to some extent effective. Their action was assisted by spells, 
for general use in the preparation or application, or for special 
diseases. In most cases several ingredients are prescribed 
together: when the amounts are indicated it is by measure not 
by weight, and evidently no very potent drugs were employed, 
for the smallest measure specified is equal to about half of a 
cubic inch. Little has yet been accomplished in identifying the 
diseases and the substances named in the medical papyri. 

/v S J??i?L 7 Vi Reisner ' The Hearst Medical Papyrus (Leipzig, 1905), 
(A V 11 1th Dynasty), and for a great magical text of the Roman 
period (3rd century a.d.) with some prescriptions, F. LI. Griffith and 
H. Ihompson, The Demohc Magical Papyrus of London and Leiden 
(London, 1904). 

Literature.— The vast mass of writing which has come down to 
us from the ancient Egyptians comprises documents of almost 
every conceivable kind, business documents and correspondence, 
legal documents, memorial inscriptions, historical, scientific, 
didactic, magical and religious literature; also tales and lyrics 
and other compositions in poetical language. Most of these 
classes are dealt with in this article under special headings. 
In addition there should be mentioned the abundant explanatory 
inscriptions attached to wall-scenes as a secondary element in 
those compositions. As early as the Middle Kingdom, papyri are 
found containing classified lists of words, titles, names of cities, 

4 8 



&c, and of nomes with their capitals, festivals, deities and sacred 
things, calendars, &c. 

To a great extent the standard works in all classes date from 
an early age, not later than the Middle Kingdom, and subsequent 
works of religion and learning like the later additions were 
largely written in the same style. Several books of proverbs or 
" instructions " were put in circulation during the Middle King- 
dom. Kagemni and Ptahhotp of the Old Kingdom were nomin- 
ally or really the instructors in manners: King Amenemhe I. 
laid down the principles of conduct in government for his son 
Senwosri I., preaching on the text of beneficence rewarded by 
treachery; Kheti points out in detail to his schoolboy son Pepi 
the advantages enjoyed by scribes and the miseries of all other 
careers. Some of these books are known only in copies of the 
New Kingdom. The instructions of Ani to his son Khenshotp 
are of later date. In demotic the most notable of such works 
is a papyrus of the first century a.d. at Leiden. 

A number of Egyptian tales are known, dating from the 
Middle Kingdom and later. Some are so sober and realistic as 
to make it doubtful whether they are not true biographies and 
narratives of actual events. Such are the story of Sinuhi, a 
fugitive to Syria in the reign of Sesostris [Senwosri] I., and 
perhaps the narrative of Unamun of his expedition in quest of 
cedar wood for the bark of the Theban Ammon in the XXIst 
Dynasty. Others are highly imaginative or with miraculous 
incidents, like the story of the Predestined Prince and the story 
of the Two Brothers, which begins with a pleasing picture of the 
industrious farmer, and, in demotic of the Ptolemaic and Roman 
periods, two stories of the learned Sethon Khamois,sonofRameses 
II. and high priest of Ptah, with his rather tragical experiences 
at the hands of magicians. The stories of the Middle Kingdom 
were in choice diction, large portions of them being rhetorical 
or poetical compositions attributed to the principal characters. 
The story of Sinuhi is of this description and was much read 
during the New Kingdom. Another, of the Eloquent Peasant 
whose ass had been stolen, was only a framework to the rhetoric 
of endless petitions. The tale of the Shipwrecked Sailor in the 
Red Sea was a piece of simpler writing, not unpicturesque, of the 
marvellous type of a Sindbad story. If all these are deficient 
in literary merit, they are deeply interesting as revelations of 
primitive mind and manners. Of New Kingdom tales, the story 
of the Two Brothers is frankly in the simplest speech of everyday 
life, while others are more stilted. The demotic stories of 
Khamois are simple, but the " Rape of Inaros' Cuirass " (at 
Vienna) is told in a stiff and high-flown style. 

In general it may be said of Egyptian literary compositions 
that apart from their interest as anthropological documents 
they possess no merit which would entitle them to survive. 
They are more or less touched by artificiality, but so far as we 
are able to appreciate them at present they very seldom attain 
to any degree of literary beauty. Most of the compositions in 
the literary language, whether old or archaistic, are in a stilted 
style and often with parallelisms of phrase like those of Hebrew 
poetry. Simple prose narrative is here quite exceptional. 
Some few hymns contain stanzas of ten lines, each line with a 
break in the middle. There is no sign of rhyming in Egyptian 
poetry, and the rhythm is not yet recognizable owing to our 
ignorance of the ancient vocalization. In old Egyptian tales the 
narrative portions are frequently in prose; New Egyptian and 
demotic contain as a rule little else. Hymns exist in both of 
these later forms of the language, and a few love songs in Late 

See W. M. F. Petrie, Egyptian Tales (2 vols., London, 1895); 
G. Maspero, Les Contss populaires de I'Egypte ancienne (3rd edition, 
Paris, 1906) ; W. Max Miiller, Die Liebespoesie der alien Agypter 
(Leipzig, 1899). (F. Ll. G.) 

C. Religion. — 1. Introductory. — Copious as are the sources of 
information from which our knowledge of the Egyptian religion is 
drawn, there is nevertheless no aspect of the ancient civilization 
of Egypt that we really so little understand. While the youth of 
Egyptological research is in part responsible for this, the reason 
lies still more in the nature of the religion itself and the character 

of the testimony bearing upon it. For a true appreciation of the 
chaotic polytheism that reveals itself even in the earliest texts 
it would be necessary to be able to trace its development, stage 
by stage, out of a number of naive primitive cults; but the 
period of growth lies behind recorded history, and we are here 
reduced to hypotheses and a posteriori reconstructions. The 
same criticism applies, no doubt, to other religions, like those of 
Greece and Rome. • In Egypt, however, the difficulty is much 
aggravated by the poor quality of the evidence. The religious 
books are textually very corrupt, one-sided in their subject- 
matter, and distributed over a period of more than two thousand 
years. The greatest defect of all is their relative silence with 
regard to the myths. For the story of Isis and Osiris we have 
indeed the late treatise ascribed to Plutarch, and a few fragments 
of other myths may be culled from earlier native sources. But 
in general the tales that passed current about the gods are 
referred to only in mysterious and recondite allusions; as 
Herodotus for his own times explicitly testifies, a reticence in 
such matters seems to have been encouraged by the priests. 
Thus with regard to Egyptian theology we are very imperfectly 
informed, and the account that is here given of it must be looked 
upon as merely provisional. The actual practices of the cult, 
both funerary and divine, are better known, and we are 
tolerably familiar with the doctrines as to the future state 
of the dead. There is good material, too, for the study 
of Egyptian magic, though this branch has been somewhat 
neglected hitherto. 

2. Main Sources. — (a) The Pyramid texts, a vast collection of 
incantations inscribed on the inner walls of five royal tombs 
of the Vth and Vlth Dynasties at Sakkara, discovered and first 
published by Maspero. Much of these texts is of extreme 
antiquity; one incantation at least has been proved to belong 
to an age anterior to the unification of the Northern and Southern 
kingdoms. Later copies also exist, but possess little independent 
critical value. The subject-matter is funerary, i.e. it deals 
with the fate of the dead king in the next life. Some chapters 
describe the manner in which he passes from earth to heaven 
and becomes a star in the firmament, others deal with the food 
and drink necessary for his continued existence after death, 
and others again with the royal prerogatives which he hopes stiL' 
to enjoy; many are directed against the bites of snakes and 
stings of scorpions. It is possible that these incantations were 
recited as part of the funerary ritual, but there is no doubt that 
their mere presence in the tombs was supposed to be magically 
effective for the welfare of the dead. Originally these texts had 
an application to the king alone, but before the beginning of the 
XHth Dynasty private individuals had begun to employ them 
on their own behalf. They seem to be relatively free from textual 
corruption, but the vocabulary still occasions much difficulty to 
the translator. 

(J>) The Book of the Dead is the somewhat inappropriate name 
applied to a large similar collection of texts of various dates, 
certain chapters of which show a tendency to become welded 
together into a book of fixed content and uniform order. A 
number of chapters contained in the later recensions are already 
found on the sarcophagi of the Middle Kingdom, together with 
a host of funereal texts not usually reckoned as belonging to the 
Book of the Dead; these have been published by Lepsius and 
Lacau. The above-mentioned nucleus, combined with other 
chapters of more recent origin, is found in the papyri of the 
XVIIIth-XXth Dynasties, and forms the so-called Theban 
recension, which has been edited by Naville inan important work. 
Here already more or less rigid groups of chapters may be noted, 
but individual manuscripts differ greatly in what they include 
and exclude. In the Saite period a sort of standard edition was 
drawn up, consisting of 165 chapters in a fixed order and with a 
common title " the book of going forth in the day "; this recen- 
sion was published by Lepsius in 1842 from a Turin papyrus 
Like the Pyramid texts, the Book of the Dead served a funerary 
purpose, but its contents are far more heterogeneous; besides 
chapters enabling the dead man to assume what shape he will, 
or to issue triumphant from the last judgment, there are lists 




Khnum the god of Esna, while in the next minute and without 
any conscious sense of contradiction the two might be looked 
upon as entirely separate beings. In order that there might be 
no ambiguity as to what divinity was meant, it became usual, 
in speaking of any local deity, to specify the place of which he 
was " lord." The tendency to create new forms of a god by 
instituting his worship in new local centres persisted through- 
out the whole course of Egyptian history, unhindered by the 
opposite tendency which made national out of local gods. Some 
of the cosmic gods, like the sun-god Re of Heliopolis and of 
Hermonthis, early acquired a local in addition to their cosmic 

In the innermost principle of their existence, as patrons and 
protectors of restricted communities, the primitive tribal gods 
did not differ from one another. But externally they were dis- 
tinguishable by the various shapes that their worshippers ascribed 
to them; and there can be little doubt that even in the beginning 
each had his own special attributes and particular mythical 
traits. These, however, may have borne little resemblance to 
the later conceptions of the same gods with which we are made 
familiar by the Pyramid texts. Thus we have no means of 
ascertaining what the earliest people of Sais thought about their 
goddess Neith, though her fetish would seem to point to her 
warlike nature. Nor are we much wiser in respect of those 
primitive tribal gods that are represented on the oldest monu- 
ments in animal form. For though we may be sure that the shape 
of an animal was that in which these gods were literally visible 
to their worshippers, yet it is impossible to tell whether some 
one living animal was chosen to be the earthly tenement of the 
deity, or whether he revealed himself in every individual of a 
species, or whether merely the cult-image was roughly hewn into 
the shape of an animal, Not too much weight must be attached 
to later evidence on this point; for the New Kingdom and still 
more the Graeco-Roman period witnessed a strange recrudescence 
of supposed primitive cults, to which they gave a form that may 
or may not have been historically exact. In some places whole 
classes of animals came to be deemed sacred. Thus at Bubastis, 
where the cat-headed Bast (Ubasti) was worshipped, vast ceme- 
teries of mummified cats have been found; and elsewhere 
similar funerary cults were accorded to crocodiles, lizards, ibises 
and many other animals. In Elephantine Khnum was supposed 
to become incarnate in a ram, at whose death the divinity left 
him and took up his abode in another. So too the bull of Apis 
(a black animal with white spots) was during its lifetime regarded 
as a reincarnation of Ptah, the local god of Memphis, and similarly 
the Mnevis and Bacis bulls were accounted to be " the living 
souls " of Etom of Heliopolis and of Re of Hermonthis respec- 
tively; these latter cults are certainly secondary, for Ptah 
himself was never, either early or late, depicted otherwise than 
in human form, as a mummy or as a dwarf; and Etom and Re 
are but different names of the sun-god. The form of a snake, 
attributed to many local goddesses, especially in later times 
(e.g. Meresger of the Theban necropolis), was borrowed from 
the very ancient deity Outo (Buto) ; the semblance of a snake 
became so characteristic of female divinities that even the 
word " goddess " was written with the hieroglyph of a snake. 
Other animal shapes particularly affected by goddesses were 
those of a lioness (Sakhmi, Pakhe) or a cow (Hathor, Isis). The 
primitive animal gods are not to be confused with the animal 
forms ascribed to many cosmic deities; thus when the sun-god 
Re was pictured as a scarabaeus, or dung-beetle, rolling its ball 
of dung behind it, this was certainly mere poetical imagery. 
Or else a cosmic god might assume an animal shape through 
assimilation with some tribal god, as when Re was identified 
with Horus and therefore depicted as a falcon. 

With the advance of civilization and the transformation of the 
tribal gods into national divinities, the beliefs held about them 
must have become less crude. At a very early date the anthropo- 
morphizing tendency caused the animal deities to be represented 
with human bodies, though as a rule they retained their animal 
heads; so in the case of Seth as early as the Ilnd Dynasty. 
The other gods carry their primitive fetishes in their hands (like 

Neith, who is depicted holding arrows) or on their heads (so 
Nefertem [Iphthimis] with his lotus-flower'). At the same time 
the gods began to acquire human personalities. In a few 
instances this may have come about by the emphasizing of a 
really primitive trait; as when the wolf Ophois, in consonance 
with the predatory nature of that animal, developed into a 
god of war. In other cases the transitional steps are shrouded 
in mystery; we do not know, for example, why the ibis Thoth 
subsequently became the patron of the fine arts, the inventor 
of writing, and the scribe of the gods. But the main factor in 
this evolutionary process was undoubtedly the formation of 
myths, which brought gods of independent origin into relation 
with one another, and thus imbued them with human passions 
and virtues. Here dim historic recollections often determined 
the features of the story, and in one famous legend that knits 
together a group of gods all seemingly local in origin we can 
still faintly trace how the tale arose, was added to, and finally 
crystallized in a Coherent form. 

Osiris was a wise and beneficent king, who reclaimed the 
Egyptians from savagery, gave them laws and taught them handi- 
crafts. The prosperous reign of Osiris was brought to a premature 
close by the machinations of his wicked brother Seth, who with 
seventy-two fellow-conspirators invited him to a banquet, in- 
duced him to enter a cunningly-wrought coffin made exactly to 
his measure, then shut down the lid and cast the chest into the 
Nile. Isis, the faithful wife of Osiris, set forth in search of her 
dead husband's body, and after long and adventure-fraught 
wanderings, succeeded in recovering it and bringing it back 
to Egypt. Then while she was absent visiting her son Horus 
in the city of Buto, Seth once more gained possession of the 
corpse, cut it into fourteen pieces, and scattered them all over 
Egypt. But Isis collected the fragments, and wherever one was 
found, buried it with due honour; or, according to a different 
account, she joined the limbs together by virtue of her magical 
powers, and the slain Osiris, thus resurrected, henceforth reigned 
as king of the dead in the nether world. When Horus grew 
up he set out to avenge his father's murder, and after terrible 
struggles finally conquered and dispossessed his wicked uncle; 
or, as another version relates, the combatants were separated by 
Thoth, and Egypt divided between them, the northern part 
falling to Horus and the southern to Seth. Such is the story 
as told by Plutarch, with certain additions and modifications 
from older native sources. There existed, however, a very ancient 
tradition according to which Horus and Seth were hostile brothers, 
not nephew and uncle; and many considerations may be urged 
in support of the thesis which regards their struggles as reminis- 
cences of wars between two prominent tribes. or confederations 
of tribes, one of which worshipped the falcon Horus while the 
other had the okapi (?) Seth as its patron and champion. The 
Horus^tribes were the victors, and it was from them that the 
dynastic line sprang; hence the Pharaoh always bore the name 
of Horus, and represented in his own hallowed person the ancient 
tribal deity. Of Osiris we can only state that he was originally 
the local god of Busiris, whatever further characteristics he 
primitively possessed being quite obscure. Isis was perhaps the 
local goddess of Buto, a town not far distant from Busiris; 
this geographical proximity would suffice to explain her con- 
nexion with Osiris in the tale. A legend now arose, we know 
not how or why, which made Seth the brother and murderer of 
Osiris; and this led to a fusion of the Horus-Seth and the Seth- 
Isis-Osiris motifs. The relationships had now to be readjusted, 
and the most popular view recognized Horus as the son and 
avenger of Osiris. The more ancient account survived, however, 
in the myth that Osiris, Horus, Seth, Isis and Nephthys (a 
goddess who plays but a minor part in the Osiris cycle) were all 
children of the earth-god Keb and the sky-goddess Nut, born on 
the five consecutive days added on at the end of the year (the 
so-called epagomenal days). Later generations reconciled these 
contradictions by assuming the existence of two Ho ruses, one, 
the brother of Osiris, Seth and Isis, being named Haroeris, i.e. 
Horus the elder, while the other, the child of Isis and Osiris, was 
called Harpocrates, i.e. Horus the child. 





The second main class of divinities that entered into the 
composition of the Egyptian pantheon was due to that innate 
and universal speculative bent which seeks, and never 
fails to find, an explanation of the facts of the external 
world. Behind the great natural phenomena that they 
perceived all around them, the Egyptians, like other primitive 
folk, postulated the existence of divine wills not dissimilar 
in kind to their own, though vastly superior in power. Chief 
among these cosmic deities was the sun-god Re, whose supremacy 
seemed predestined under the cloudless sky of Egypt. The 
oldest conceptions represented Re as sailing across the heavens 
in a ship called " Manzet," " the bark of the dawn "; at sunset 
he stepped aboard another vessel named " Mesenktet," " the 
bark of the dusk," which bore him back from west to east 
during the night. Later theories symbolized Re in many 
different ways. For some he was identical with Horus, and then 
he was falcon-headed and was called Hor-akhti, the Horus of 
the horizons. Others pictured him to themselves as a tiny 
infant in the early dawn, as full-grown at noon, and as an infirm 
old man in the evening. When the sky was imagined as a cow, 
he was a calf born anew every morning. The moon was a male 
deity, who likewise fared across the heavens in a boat; hence 
he was often named Chons, " the sailor." The ibis-god Thoth 
was early identified with the moon. The stars and planets 
were likewise gods. Among them the bright star Sirius was 
held in special esteem; it was a goddess Sothis (Sopde), often 
identified by the Egyptians with Isis. The constellations that 
seemed unceasingly to speed across the sky were named " the 
never-resting ones," and the circumpolar stars, which never 
sink beneath the horizon, were known as " the imperishables." 
Concerning earth and sky there were many different opinions. 
Some thought that the sky was a goddess Nut, whom the god 
Show held aloof from her husband Keb the earth, on whose back 
the plants and trees grew. Others believed in a celestial ocean, 
personified under the name of Nun, over which the heavenly 
bodies sailed in boats. At a later date the sky was held to be a 
cow (Hathor) whose four feet stood firm upon the soil; or else 
a vast face, in which the right eye was the sun and the left eye 
the moon. Alongside these fanciful conceptions there existed 
a more sober view, according to which the earth was a long 
oval plain, and the sky an iron roof supported by the tops of 

mountains or by four pillars ] j jj at the cardinal points. 

Beneath the ground lay a dark and mysterious region, now con- 
ceived as an inverse heaven (Nenet), now as a vast series of 
caverns whose gates were guarded by demons. This nether 
world was known as the Duat (Dat, Tei), and through it passed 
the sun on his journey during the hours of night; here too, as 
many thought, dwelt the dead and their king Osiris. That great 
natural feature of Egypt, the Nile, was of course one of the gods; 
his name was Hapi, and as a sign of his fecundity he had long 
pendulous breasts like a woman. In contradistinction to the 
tribal gods, it rarely happened that the cosmic deities enjoyed 
a cult. But there are a few important exceptions: Re in 
Heliopolis (here identified with a local god Etom) and in Her- 
monthis; Hathor at Dendera and elsewhere. Certain of the 
.tribal gods early became identified with cosmic divinities, and 
the latter thus became the objects of a cult; so, for instance, 
the Horus of Edfu was a sun-god, and Thoth in Hermopolis 
Magna was held to be the moon. 

An extension of the principle that created the cosmic gods 
gave rise to a large number of minor deities and demons. Day 
minor ano< n ight> the year, the seasons, eternity, and many 
deities similar conceptions were each represented by a god 
and or goddess of their own, who nevertheless possessed 

demons. ^ u( . a sna( j OW y an( j doubtful existence. Human 
attributes like Taste, Knowledge, Joy and so forth were likewise 
personified, no less than abstract ideas such as Fate, Destiny 
and others; rather more clearly defined than the rest was Maat, 
the goddess of Truth and Right, who was fabled to be the daughter 
of Re and may even have had a cult. Certain gods were purely 
functional, that is to say, they appeared at special times to 

perform some appointed task, at the completion of which they 
vanished. Such were Nepri, the god of the corn-harvest ; 
Meskhonit, the goddess who attended every child-bed; Tait, the 
goddess of weaving. Numberless semi-divine beings had no 
other purpose than to fill out the myths, as, for instance, the 
chattering apes that greeted the sun-god Re as he rose above 
the eastern horizon, and the demons who opened the gates of 
the nether world at the approach of the setting sun. 

We take this opportunity of mentioning sundry other divinities 
who were later introduced to swell the already overcrowded 
ranks of the pantheon. Contact with. foreign lands 
brought with it several new deities, Baal, Ahat and aemes". 
Resheph from Syria, and the misshapen dwarf Bes 
from the south; earlier than these, the Astarte of Byblus, 
whom the Egyptians identified with Hathor. In Thebes Ameno- 
phis I. and his spouse Nefertari were worshipped as patron gods 
of the necropolis many centuries after their death. Two men of 
exceptional wisdom received divine honours, and had temples 
of their own in the Ptolemaic period; these were Imouthes, 
who had lived under Zoser of the IHrd Dynasty, and Amenophis 
son of Hapu, a contemporary of the third king of the same name 
(XVIIIth Dyn.). The hill of Sheikh Abd-el-gurna at Thebes 
was looked upon as a particularly holy place, and was revered 
as a goddess. Almost anything that was regarded with awe, 
any object used in the divine ritual could at a given moment 
be envisaged as a deity. Thus the boat of Osiris (Neshemet) 
and those of the sun-god were goddesses; and various wands 
and sceptres belonging to certain gods were imagined as harbour- 
ing the divine being. Truly it might have been said in ancient 
Egypt: of the making of gods there is no end ! 

For such order as can be discerned in the mythological con- 
ceptions of the Egyptians the priesthood was largely responsible. 
At a very early date the theological school of Heliopolis • 

undertook the task of systematizing the gods and the combina- 
myths, and it is mainly to them that is due the Egyptian ti ons . 
religion as we find it in the Pyramid texts. Their in- 
fluence is particularly conspicuous in the prominent place accorded 
to the sun-god Re, and in the creation-legend that made him the 
father of gods and men. First of all living things was Re; 
legend told how he arose as a naked babe from a lotus-flower 
that floated on the primeval ocean Nun. Others held the view 
that he crept from an egg that lay on a hill in the midst of a lake 
called Desdes; and a third, more barbarous, tale related his 
obscene act of self -procreation. Re became the father of the 
pair of gods Show and Tefnut (Tphenis), who emanated from 
his spittle. They again gave birth to Keb and Nut, from whom 
in their turn sprang Osiris and Seth, Isis and Nephthys. These 
nine gods were together known as the great Ennead or cycle of 
nine. A second series of nine deities, with Horus as its first 
member, was invented at the same time or not long afterwards, 
and was called the Lesser Ennead. In later times the theory of 
the Ennead became very popular and was adopted by most of 
the local priesthoods, who substituted their own favourite god 
for Re, sometimes retaining and sometimes changing the names 
of the other eight deities. Thus locally many different gods 
came to be viewed as the creators of the world. Only in two 
instances, however, did a local god ever obtain wide acceptance 
in the capacity of demiurge: Ptah of Memphis, who was famed 
as : an artist and master-builder, and Khnum of Elephantine, 
who was said to have moulded mankind on the potter's wheel. 

Already in the Pyramid texts the importance of Osiris almost 
rivals that of Re. His worship does not seem to have been due 
to Heliopolitan influence, and may possibly have been propagated 
by active missionary effort. It is apparently through the funeral 
cult that Osiris so early took a firm hold on the imagination of 
the people; for at a very ancient date he was identified with 
every dead king, and it needed but a slight extension of this idea 
to make him into a king of the dead. In later times the moral 
aspect of his tale was doubtless the main cause of its continued 
popularity; Osiris was named Onnophris, "the good Being" 
par excellence,, and Seth was contrasted with him as the author 
and the root of all evil. Still the Egyptians themselves seem 




of gates to be passed and demons to be encountered in the 
nether world, formulae such as are inscribed on sepulchral figures 
and amulets, and even hymns to the sun-god. These texts are 
for the most part excessively corrupt, and despite the transla- 
tions of Pierret, Renouf and Budge, much labour must yet 
be expended upon them before they can rank as a first-rate 

(c) The texts of the Tombs of the Kings at Thebes (XVIIIth- 
XXth Dyn.) consist of a series of theological books compiled 
at an uncertain date; they have been edited by Naville and 
Lefebure. The chief of these, extant in a longer and a shorter 
version, is called The book of that which is in the Nether World 
(familiarly known as the Am Duat) and deals with the journey 
of the sun during the twelve hours of the night. The Book of 
Gates treats of the same topic from a more theological stand- 
point. The Litanies of the Sun contain the acclamations with 
which the sun-god Re was greeted, when at eventide his bark 
reached the entrance of the nether world. Another treatise 
relates the destruction of mankind, and the circumstances that 
led to the creation of the heavens in the form of a cow. 

(d) Among the later religious books one or two deserve a 
special mention, such as The Overthrowing of Apophis, the serpent 
enemy of the sun-god; The Lamentations of I sis and Nephthys 
over their murdered brother Osiris; The Book of Breathings, a 
favourite book among the later Theban priests. Several of these 
books were used in the ritual of feast days, but all have received 
a secondary funerary employment, and are therefore found buried 
with the dead in their tombs. 

(e) The Ritual texts have survived only in copies not earlier 
than the New Kingdom. The temple ritual employed in the 
daily cult is illustrated by the scenes depicted on the inner walls 
of the great temples: the formulae recited during the perform- 
ance of the ceremonies are recorded at length in the temple of 
Seti I. (XlXth Dyn.) at Abydos, as well as in some later papyri 
in Berlin. The whole material has been collected and studied 
by Moret. The funerary ritual is known from texts in the Theban 
tombs (XVIIIth-XXth Dyn.) and papyri and sarcophagi of 
later date; older versions are contained in the Pyramid texts 
and The Book of the Dead. Schiaparelli has done much towards 
gathering together this scattered material. The ritual observed 
during the process of embalmment is preserved in late papyri in 
Paris and Cairo published by Maspero. 

(j) The magical documents have been comparatively little 
studied, in spite of their great interest. They deal for the most 
part with the hearing of diseases, the bites of snakes and scorpions, 
&c, but incidentally cast many sidelights on the mythology and 
superstitious beliefs. The best-known of these books is the 
Papyrus Harris published by F. J. Chabas, but other papyri of 
as great or greater importance are to be found in the Leiden, 
Turin and other collections. A curious book published by 
A. Erman contains spells to be used by mothers for the protection 
of their children. A papyrus in London contains a calendar of 
lucky and unlucky days. A late class of stelae, of which the best 
specimen has been published by Golenischeff, consists of spells of 
various kinds originally intended for the use of the living, but 
later employed for funerary purposes. 

(g) Under the heading Miscellaneous we must mention a 
number of sources of great value: the grave-stones, or stelae, 
especially those from Abydos, which throw much light on funerary 
beliefs; the great Papyrus Harris, the longest of all papyri, 
which enumerates the gifts of Rameses III. (XXth Dyn.) to 
the various temples of Egypt; the hymns to the gods preserved 
in Cairo and Leiden papyri; and the inscriptions of the Ptolemaic 
temples (Dendera, Edfu, &c), which teem with good religious 
material. Nor can any attempt here be made to summarize 
the remaining native Egyptian sources, literary and archaeo- 
logical, that deserve notice. 

(h) Among the classical writers, Plutarch in his treatise 
Concerning Isis and Osiris is the most important. Diodorus also 
is useful. Herodotus, owing to his religious awe and dread of 
divulging sacred mysteries, is only a second-rate source. 

3. The Gods. — The end of the pre-dynastic period, in which 

we dimly descry a number of independent tribes in constant 
warfare with one another, was marked by the rise of a united 
Egyptian state with a single Pharaonic ruler at its head. The 
era of peace thus inaugurated brought with it a rapid progress 
in all branches of civilization; and there soon emerged not only 
a national art and a condition of material prosperity shared by 
the entire land in common, but also a state religion, which 
gathered up the ancient tribal cults and floating cosmica! 
conceptions, and combining them as best it could, imposed 
them on the people as a whole. By the time that the Pyramid 
texts were put into writing, doubtless long before the Vth 
Dynasty, this religion had assumed a stereotyped appearance 
that clung to it for ever afterwards. But the multitude of the 
deities and the variety of the myths that it strove to incorporate 
prevented the development of a uniform theological system, 
and the heterogeneous origin of the religion remained irretrievably 
stamped upon its face. Written records were few at the time 
when the pantheon was built up, so that the process of construc- 
tion cannot be followed historically from stage to stage; but 
it is possible by arguing backwards from the later facts .to discern 
the main tendencies at work, and the principal elementary cults 
that served as the materials. 

The gods of the pre-dynastic period may be divided into two 
chief groups, the tribal or local divinities and the cosmic or 
explanatory deities. At the beginning each tribe had ciasslfl- 
its own particular god, who in essence was nothing cation of 
but the articulate expression of the inner cohesion and P«*- 
of the outward independence of the tribe itself, but a y° astlc 
who outwardly manifested himself in the form of some 
animal or took up his abode in some fetish of wood or stone. 
In times of peace this visible emblem of the god's presence 
was housed in a rude shrine, but in war-time it was taken thence 
and carried into the battlefield on a standard. We find such 
divine standards *J often depicted on the earliest monuments, 
and among the symbols placed upon them may be detected the 
images of many deities destined to play an important part in the 

later national pantheon, such as the falcon Horus jss. , the wolf 
Wepwawet (Ophois) )f^\ , the goddess Neith SL, symbolized 

by a shield transfixed with arrows, and the god Min v ^ , the 

nature of whose fetish is obscure. In course of time the tribes 
became localized in particular districts, under the influence of a 
growing central authority, and their gods then passed from tribal 
into local deities. Hence it came about that the provincial 
districts or nomes, as they were called, often derived their names 
from the gods of tribes that settled in them, these names being 
hieroglyphically written with the sign for " district " surmounted 

by standards of the type above described, e.g. p^ \, "the nome 

of the dog Anubis," the 17th or Cynopolite nome of Upper 
Egypt. In this way a large number of deities came to enjoy 

special reverence in restricted territories, e.g. the ram ^fca 

Khnum in Elephantine, the jerboa or okapi (?) £v] Seth in 

Ombos, the ibis _2Js Thoth in Hermopolis Magna, and of the 

gods named above, Horus in Hieraconpolis, Wepwawet in Assiut, 
Neith in Sais, and Min in Coptos. As towns and villages gradu- 
ally sprang up, they too adopted as their patron some one or 
other of the original tribal gods, so that these came to have 
different seats of worship all over Egypt. For this reason it is 
often hard to tell where the primitive cult-centre of a particular 
deity is to be sought; thus Horus seems equally at home both 
at Buto in the Delta and at Hieraconpolis in Upper Egypt, 
and the earliest worship of Seth appears to have been claimed 
no less by Tanis in the north than by Ombos in the south. The 
effect of the localization of gods in many different places was to 
give them a double aspect; so, for instance, Khnum the god of 
Elephantine could in one minute be regarded as identical with 




to have been somewhat at a loss to account for the great venera- 
tion that they paid to Osiris. Successive theories interpreted 
him as the god of the earth, as the god of the Nile, as a god of 
vegetation, as a moon-god and as a sun-god; and nearly every 
one of these theories has been claimed to be the primitive truth 
by some scholar or another. 

Nowhere is the conservatism of the Egyptians more clearly 
displayed than in the tenacity with which they clung to the 
old forms of the theology, such as -we have essayed to describe. 
Neither the influx of new deities nor the diligence of the priestly 
authors and commentators availed to break down the cast-iron 
traditions with which the compilers of the Pyramid texts were 
already familiar. It is true that with the displacement of the 
capital town certain local deities attained a degree of power 
that, superficially regarded, seems to alter the entire perspective 
of the religion. Thus Ammon, originally the obscure local god 
of Thebes, was raised by the Theban monarchs of the Xllth 
and of the XVIIIth to XXIst Dynasties to a predominant 
position never equalled by any other divinity; and, by similar 
means, Suchos of the Fayum, Ubasti of Bubastis, and Neith of 
Sais, each enjoyed for a short space of time a consideration that 
no other cause would have secured to them. But precisely the 
example of Ammon proves the hopelessness of any attempt to 
change the time-honoured religious creed; his priests identified 
him with the sun-god Re, whose cult-centre was thus merely 
transferred a few hundred miles to the South. Nor could even 
the violent religious revolution of Akhenaton (Amenophis IV.), 
of which we shall later have occasion to speak, sweep away for 
ever beliefs that had persisted for so many generations. 

But if the facts of the religion, broadly viewed, never under- 
went a change, the interpretation of those facts did so in no 
small degree. The religious books were for the most part written 
in archaic language, which was only imperfectly understood by 
the priests of later times; and hence great scope was given to 
them to exercise their ingenuity as commentators. By the time 
of the XVIIIth Dynasty some early chapters of the Book of 
the Dead had been provided with a triple commentary. Un- 
fortunately the methods pursued were as little reasonable as 
those adopted by the medieval Jewish Rabbis; instead of the 
context being studied as a whole, with a view to the recovery of 
its literal sense, each single verse was considered separately, 
and explained as an allusion to some obscure myth or as em- 
bodying some mystical meaning. Thus so far from simplifying or 
really elucidating the religion, these priestly labours tended rather 
to confuse one legend with another and to efface the personality 
of individual gods. The ease with which one god could be 
identified with another is perhaps the most striking characteristic 
of later Egyptian theology. There are but few of the greater 
deities who were not at some time or another identified with the 
solar god Re. His fusion with Horus and Etom has already been 
noted; further we find an Ammon-Re, a Sobk-Re, a Khnum-Re; 
and Month, Onouris, Show and Osiris are all described as possess- 
ing the attributes of the sun. Ptah was early assimilated to 
the sepulchral gods Sokaris and Osiris. Pairs of deities whose 
personalities are often blended or interchanged are Hathor and 
Nut, Sakhmi and Pakhe, Seth and Apophis. So too in Abydos, 
his later home, Osiris was identified with Khante-Amentiu 
(Khentamenti, Khentamenthes), " the chief of those who are 
in the West," a name that was given to a vaguely-conceived but 
widely- venerated divinity ruler of the dead. Many factors helped 
in the process of assimilation. The unity of the state was largely 
influential in bringing about the suppression of local differences 
of belief. The less important priesthoods were glad to enhance 
the reputation of the deity they served by identifying him 
with some more important god. And the mystical bent of the 
Egyptians found satisfaction in the multiplicity of forms that 
their gods could assume; among the favourite epithets which 
the hymns apply to divinities are such as "mysterious of shapes," 
"multiple of faces." 

The goal towards which these tendencies verged was mono- 
theism; and though this goal was only once, and then quite 
ephemerally, reached, still the monotheistic idea was at most 

periods, so to speak, in the air. Sometimes the qualities com- 
mon to all the gods were abstracted, and the resultant notion 
spoken of as "the god." At other times, and especially 
in the hymns addressed to some divinity, all other ta °e"^u e 
gods were momentarily forgotten, and he was eulogized tendency. 
as " the only one," " the supreme," and so forth. 
Or else several of the chief deities were consciously combined 
and regarded as different emanations or aspects of a Sole Being; 
thus a Ramesside hymn begins with the words " Three are all 
the gods, Ammon, Re and Ptah," and then it is shown how these 
three gods, each in his own particular way, gave expression and 
effect to a single divine purpose. 

For a brief period at the end of the XVIIIth Dynasty a real 
monotheism, as exclusive as that of Judaism or of Islam, was 
adopted as the state religion of Egypt. The young 
Pharaoh Amenophis IV. seems to have been fired by toa% 
genuine fanatical enthusiasm, though political motives, 
as well as doctrinal considerations, may have prompted him in 
the planning of his religious revolution (see also § History). 
The Theban god Ammon-Re was then supreme, and the ever- 
growing power of his priesthood may well have inflamed the 
jealousy of their Heliopolitan rivals. Amenophis began his reign 
in Thebes as an adherent of the traditional faith, but after a 
few years he abandoned that town and built a new capital for 
his god Aton 200 m. farther north, at a place now called El 
Amarna. The new deity was a personification of the sun's disk. 
The name Re was suppressed, as too intimately associated with 
that of Ammon; and Ammon, together with all the other gods, 
was put to the ban. Amenophis even changed his own name, 
of which the name of Ammon formed an element, to Akhenaton, 
" the brilliancy of the Aton," and the capital was called Khitaton, 
" The Horizon of the Aton." The new dogmas were known as 
" the Teaching," and their tenets, as revealed in the poems 
composed in honour of the Aton, breathe the purest and most 
exalted monotheistic spirit. The movement had, no doubt, met 
with serious opposition from the very start, and the reaction soon 
set in. The immediate successors of Akhenaton strove to follow 
in his footsteps, but the conservative nature of Egypt quickly 
asserted itself. Not sixty years after the accession of Akhenaton, 
his city was abandoned, its rulers branded as heretics, and the 
old religion restored in Thebes as completely as if the Aton had 
never existed. 

Having thus failed to become rational, Egyptian theology 
took refuge in learning. The need for a more spiritual and intel- 
lectual interpretation of the pantheon still remained, and gave 
rise to a number of theological sciences. The names of the gods 
and the places of their worship were catalogued and classified, 
and manuals were devoted to the topography of mythological 
regions. Much ingenuity was expended on the development of a 
history of the gods, the groundwork of which had been laid in 
much earlier times. Re was not only the creator of the world, 
but he was also the first king of Egypt. He was followed on the 
throne by the other eight members of his Ennead, then by the 
lesser Ennead and by other gods, and finally by the so-called 
" worshippers of Horus." The latter were not wholly mythical 
personages, though they were regarded as demigods (Manetho 
calls them " the dead," vkmes) ; they have been shown to be 
none other than the dim rulers of the predynastic age. The 
Pharaohs of the historic period were thus divine, not only by 
virtue of their connexion with Horus (see above), but also as 
descendants of Re; and the king of Egypt was called " the 
good god " during his lifetime, and " the great god " after his 
death. The later religious literature is much taken up with the 
mythical and semi-mythical dynasties of kings, and the priests 
compiled, with many newly-invented details, the chronicles of 
the wars they were supposed to have waged. 

In a similar manner, the ethical and allegorical methods of 
interpretation came into much greater prominence towards the 
end of the New Kingdom. The Osirian legend, as we have 
already seen, was early accepted as symbolizing the conflict 
between good and evil. So too the victories of Re over the serpent 
named Apophis were more or less clearly understood as a simile of 




the antithetical nature of light and darkness. In one text at least 
as ancient as the XVIIIth Dynasty (the copy that we have dates 

only from the Ethiopian period) an ingenious attempt 
Later ^ j s ma( j e to represent Ptah as the source of all life: 
menu!' irom Kim, it is said, emanated Horus as " heart " or 

" mind " and Thoth as " tongue," and through the 
conjoint action of these two, the mind conceiving the design 
and the tongue uttering the creative command, all gods and 
men and beasts obtained their being. Of this kind of speculation 
much more must have existed than has reached us. It is 
doubtless such explanations as these that the Greeks had in 
view when they praised the wisdom of the ancient Egyptians; 
and in the classical period similar semi-philosophical interpreta- 
tions altogether supplanted, among the learned at least, the naive 
literal beliefs of earlier times. Plutarch in his treatise on Isis 
and Osiris well exemplifies this standpoint: for him every god 
and every rite is symbolic of some natural or moral truth. 
. The final stages of the Egyptian religion are marked by a 
renewed popularity of all its more barbarous elements. Despair- 
ing, as it would seem, of discovering the higher wisdom that the 
more philosophic of the priests supposed that religion to conceal, 
the simpler-minded sought to work out their own salvation by 
restoring the worship of the gods to its most primitive forms. 
Hence came the fanatical revival of animal-worship which led 
to feud and bloodshed between neighbouring towns — a feature of 
Egyptian religion that at once amused and scandalized con- 
temporary Greek and Latin authors (Plut. De Iside, 72; Juv. xv. 
33). Nevertheless Egyptian cults, and particularly those of 
Serapis and Isis, found welcome acceptance on European soil; 
and the shrines of Egyptian deities were established in all the 
great cities of the Roman Empire. Serapis was a god imported 
by the first Ptolemy from Sinope on the Black Sea, who soon lost 
his own identity by assimilation with Osiris- Apis, the bull revered 
in Memphis. Far down into the Roman age the worship of Serapis 
persisted and flourished, and it was only when the Serapeum of 
Alexandria was razed to the ground by order of Theodosius the 
Great (a.d. 391) that the death-blow of the old Egyptian religion 
was struck. 

Notes are here added on some divinities who have received in- 
adequate or no attention in the preceding pages. For information 
as to Ammon, Anubis, Apis, Bes, Bubastis, Buto, Isis and Thoth, 
reference must be made to the special articles on these gods. 

Arsaphes, in Egyptian Harshafe, " he who is upon his lake," the 
ram-headed god of Heracleopohs Magna, gained an ephemeral 
importance during the IXth Dynasty, which arose from his town. 
Outwardly, he resembles Khnum. Little is known about him, and 
he is seldom mentioned. The burial-place of his priests in later 
times was in 1904 discovered at Abusir el Meleq. 

Chons, " he who travels by boat," perhaps originally a mere 
epithet of the moon-god Ioh or Thoth, is chiefly familiar as the third 
member of the Theban triad. As such he is represented as a youthful 
god, wearing a skull-cap surmounted by the moon. His cult was 
revived and became popular in Ptolemaic times. A curious story 
about the sending of his statue to Mesopotamia to heal a daughter 
of the king of Bakhtan is related upon a stele that purports to date 
from the Ramesside period : it has been proved to be a pious fraud 
invented by the priests not earlier than the Greek period. 

Hathor, whose name means " house of Horus,' was at all times 
a very important deity. She is depicted as a cow, or with a broad 
human countenance, the cow's ears just showing from under a 
massive wig. Probably at first a goddess of the sky, she is early 
mentioned in connexion with Re. Later she was often identified 
with Isis, and her name was used to designate foreign goddesses 
like those of Puoni and Byblus. Unlike most cosmic deities, she 
was worshipped in many localities, chief among which was Dendera, 
where her magnificent temple, of Ptolemaic date, still stands. " The 
seven Hatfiors " is a name given to certain fairies, who appeared 
shortly after the birth of an infant, and predicted his future. 

Khnum or Khnoum, a ram-headed god, whose principal place of 
worship was the island of Elephantine (there associated with Satis 
and Anukis), but also revered elsewhere, e.g. together with Nebtu 
in Esna. He enjoyed great repute as a creator, and was supposed 
to use the potter's wheel for the purpose. In this capacity he is 
sometimes accompanied by the frog-headed goddess Heket. _ 

Month, a hawk-headed god of the Thebaid: in Thebes itself his 
cult was superseded by that of Ammon, but it persisted in Her- 
monthis. He was often given the solar attributes, and was credited 
as a great warrior. 

MlN, the god of Coptos and Panopolis (Akhmim), seems to have 
been early looked upon as a deity of the harvest and crops. His 

cult dates from the earliest times. Represented as ithyphallic, with 
two tall plumes on his head, the right arm upraised and bearing a 
scourge. In old times he is identified with Horus: later Ammon 
was confused with him, and depicted in his image. 

Nechbet (Nekhbi, Nekhebi),. the vulture-goddess of El Kab, 
called Eileithyia by the Greeks. She gained an ascendancy as 
patroness of the south at the time when the two kingdoms were 
striving for the mastery. It is as such, in opposition to Buto the 
goddess of the north, that she is most often named on the monuments. 

Neith, the very ancient and important goddess of Sais, the Greek 
Athene. On the earliest monuments she is represented by a shield 
transfixed by arrows. Later she wears the crown of Lower Egypt, 
and carries in her hands a bow and arrows, a sign of her warlike 
character. In the XXVIth Dynasty, when a line of Pharaohs sprang 
from Sais, she regained a prominent position, and was given many 
cosmogonic attributes, including the title of mother of Re. 

Nephthys, the sister oi Osiris and wife of Seth, daughter of Keb 
and Nut, plays a considerable r61e in the Osiris story. She sided 
with Isis and aided her to bring Osiris back to life. Isis and Nephthys 
are often mentioned together as protectresses of the dead. 

Onouris, Egyptian En-huri, " sky-bearer," the god of Thinis. 
Later identified with Shu (Show), who holds heaven and earth apart. 

Ptah, the Hephaestus of the Greeks, a demiurgic and creative 
god, special patron of hand-workers and artisans. Worshipped in 
Memphis, he perhaps owed his importance more to the political 
prominence of that town than to anything else. He was early 
identified with an ancient but obscure god Tenen, and further with 
the sepulchral deity Sokaris. He is represented either as a closely 
enshrouded figure whose protruding hands grasp a composite sceptre, 
the whole standing on a pedestal within a shrine; or else as a 
misshapen dwarf. 

Sakhmi, a lion-headed goddess of war and strife, whose name 
signifies the mighty. She was worshipped at Latopolis (Esna), but 
also at a late date as a member of the Memphite triad, with Ptah 
as husband and Nefertem (Iphthimis) as son : often, too, confounded 
with Ubasti. 

Seth (Egyptian Set, Sth or Sts), by the Greeks called Typhon, 

was depicted as an animal pvj that has been compared with the 

jerboa by some, and with the okapi by others, but which the 
Egyptians themselves occasionally conceived to be nothing but a 
badly drawn ass. In historic times his cult was celebrated at Tanis 
and Ombos. He regained a certain prestige as god of the Hyksos 
rulers, and two Pharaohs of the XlXth Dynasty derived their name 
Sethos (Seti) from him. But, generally speaking, he was abominated 
as a power of evil, and his figure was often obliterated on the monu- 
ments. He is named in similes as a great warrior, and as such and 
" son of Nut " he is identified with the Syrian Baal. 

4. The Divine Cull. — In the midst of every town rose the 
temple of the local god, a stately building of stone, strongly 
contrasting with the mud and plaster houses in which even the 
wealthiest Egyptians dwelt. It was called the "house of the god " 

(| J ), and in it the deity was supposed to reside, attended 

by his " servants " ( | y ) the priests. There was indeed a certain 

justification for this contention, even when a contrary theory 
assigned to the divinity a place in the sky, as in the case of the 
lunar divinity Thoth; for in the inmost sanctuary stood a statue 
of the god, which served as his representative for the purposes 
of the cult. Originally each temple was dedicated to one god 
only; but it early became usual to associate with him a mate of 
the opposite sex, besides a third deity who might be represented 
either as a second wife or as a child. As examples of such triads, 
as they are called, may be mentioned that of Thebes, consisting 
of Ammon, Mut and Chons, father, mother and child; and as 
typical of the other kind, where a god was accompanied by two 
goddesses, that of Elephantine, consisting of Khnum, Satis and 
Anukis. The needs of the god were much the same as those 
of mortals; no more than they could he dispense with food and 
drink, clothes for his apparel, ointment for his limbs, and music 
and dancing to rejoice his heart. The only difference w'as that 
the divine statue was half-consciously recognized as a lifeless 
thing that required carefully regulated rites and ceremonies to 
enable it to enjoy the good things offered to it. Early every 
morning the officiating priest proceeded to the holy of holies, 
after the preliminaries of purification had cleansed him from 
any miasma that might interfere with the efficacy of the rites. 
Then with the prescribed gestures, and reciting appropriate 
formulae all the while, he broke the seal upon the door of the 
shrine, loosed the bolts, and at last stood face to face with the 




god. Thtre followed a series of prostrations and adorations, 
culminating in the offering of a small image of Maat, the goddess 
of Truth. This seems to have been the psychological moment 
of the entire service: hitherto the statue had been at best a 
god in posse; now the symbolical act placed him in possession 
of all his faculties, he was a god in truth, and could participate 
like any mortal in the food and luxuries that his servants put 
before him. The daily ceremony closed with ablutions, anoint- 
ings and a bountiful feast of bread, geese, beer and oxen; having 
taken his fill of these, the god returned to his shrine until the 
next morning, when the ritual was renewed. The words that 
accompanied the manual gestures are, in the rituals that have 
come down to us, wholly dominated by the myth of Osiris: 
it is often hard to discern much connexion between the acts and 
the formulae recited, but the main thought is clearly that the 
priest represents Horus, the pious son of the dead divinity 
Osiris. That this conception is very old is proved by the fact 
that even in the Pyramid texts " the eye of Horus " is a synonym 
for all offerings: an ancient tale of which only shreds have 
reached us related how Seth had torn the eye of Horus from 
him, though not before he himself had suffered a still more 
serious mutilation; and by some means, we know not how, the 
restoration of the eye was instrumental in bringing about the 
vindication of Osiris. As to the manual rites of the daily cult, 
all that can here be said is that incense, purifications and anoint- 
ings with various oils played a large part; the sacrifices consisted 
chiefly of slaughtered oxen and geese; burnt offerings were a 
very late innovation. 

At an early date the rites practised in the various temples 
were conformed to a common pattern. This holds good not only 
for the daily ritual, but also for many festivals that were cele- 
brated on the same day throughout the whole length of the land. 
Such were the calendrical feasts, called ". the beginnings of the 
seasons," and including, for example, the monthly and half- 
monthly festivals, that of the New Year and that of the rising 
of Sirius (Sothis). But there were also local feast days like that 
of Neith in Sais (Hdt. ii. 62) or that of Ammon in southern Opi 
(Luxor). These doubtless had a more individual character, and 
often celebrated some incident supposed to have occurred in the 
lifetime of the god. Sometimes, as in the case of the feast of 
Osiris in Abydos, a veritable drama would be enacted, in which 
the whole history of the god, his sufferings and final triumph 
were represented in mimic form. At other times the ceremonial 
was more mysterious and symbolical, as in the feast of the 

raising of the Ded-column u when a column of the kind was 

drawn by cords into an upright position. But the most common 
feature of these holy days was the procession of the god, when he 
was carried on the shoulders of the priests in his divine boat far 
beyond the precincts of his temple; sometimes, indeed, even to 
another town, where he paid a visit to the god of the place. 
These occasions were public holidays, and passed amid great 
rejoicings. The climax was reached when at a given' moment 
the curtains of the shrine placed on the boat were withdrawn, 
and the god was revealed to the eyes of the awe-struck multitude. 
Music and dancing formed part of the festival rites. 

As with the rites and ceremonies, so also the temples were 
early modelled upon a common type. Lofty enclosure walls, 
adorned with scenes from the victorious campaigns 
of the Pharaoh, shut off the sacred buildings from the 
surrounding streets. A small gateway between two massive 
towers or pylons gave admittance to a spacious forecourt open 
to the sky, into which the people were allowed to enter at least on 
feast days. Farther on, separated from the forecourt by smaller 
though still massive pylons, lay a hypostyle hall, so called from 
its covered colonnades; this hair was used for all kinds of 
processions. Behind the hypostyle hall, to which a second 
similar one might or might not be added, came the holy of holies, 
a dark narrow chamber where the god dwelt; none but the 
priests were admitted to it. All around lay the storehouses that 
contained the treasures of the god and the appurtenances of the 
divine ritual. The temples of the earliest times were of course 


far more primitive than this: from the pictures that are all that 
is now left to indicate their nature, they seem to have been little 
more than huts or sheds in which the image of the god was kept. 
One temple of a type different from that above described has 
survived at Abusir, where it has been excavated by German 
explorers. It was a splendid edifice dedicated to the sun-god 
Re by a king of the Vth Dynasty, and was probably a close 
copy of the famous temple of Heliopolis. The most conspicuous 

feature was a huge obelisk on a broad superstructure fl : the 


obelisk always remained closely connected with the solar worship, 
and probably took the place of the innermost shrine and statue 
of other temples. The greater part of the sanctuary was left 
uncovered, as best befitted a dwelling-place of the sun. Outside 
its walls there was a huge brick model of the solar bark in which 
the god daily traversed the heavens. 

As the power of the Pharaohs increased, the maintenance of 
the cult became One of the most important affairs of state. The 
most illustrious manarchs prided themselves no less on the build- 
ings they raised in honour of the gods than on the successful 
wars they waged: indeed the wars won a religious significance 
through the gradual elevation of the god of the capital to god 
of the nation, and a large part of the spoils was considered the 
rightful perquisite of the latter. Countless were the riches that 
the kings heaped upon the gods in the hope of being requited 
with long life and prosperity on the throne of the living. It 
became the theory that the temples were the gifts of the Pharaoh 
to his fathers the gods, and therefore in the scenes of the cult 
that adorn the inner walls it is always he who is depicted as 
performing the ceremonies. As a matter of fact the priesthoods 
were much more independent than was allowed to 
appear. Successive grants of land placed no small P° wer ot 
portion of the entire country in their hands, and the priests. 
administration of the temple estates gave employment 
to a large number of officials and serfs. In the New Kingdom 
the might of the Theban god Ammon gradually became a serious 
menace to the throne: in the reign of Rameses III. he could 
boast of more than 80,000 dependants, and more than 400,000 
cattle. It is not surprising that a few generations later the high 
priests of Ammon supplanted the Pharaohs altogether and 
founded a dynasty of their own. 

At no .period did the priests form a caste that was quite 
distinctly separated from the laity. In early times the feudal 
lords were themselves the chief priests of the local temples. 
Under them stood a number of subordinate priests, both pro- 
fessional and lay. Among the former were the kher-heb, a 
learned man entrusted with the conduct of the ceremonies, and 
the " divine fathers," whose functions are obscure. The lay 
priests were divided into four classes that undertook the manage- 
ment of the temple in alternate months; their collective name 
was the " hour-priesthood." Perhaps it was to them that the 
often recurring title oueb, " the pure," should properly be 
restricted, though strict rules as to personal purity, dress and 
diet were demanded of all priests. The personnel of the temple 
was completed by various subordinate officials, doorkeepers, 
attendants and slaves. In the New Kingdom the leading priests 
were more frequently mere clerics than theretofore, though for 
instance the high priest of Ammon was often at the same time 
the vizier of southern Egypt. In some places the highest priests 
bore special names, such as the Ouer maa, " the Great Seer," 
of Re in Heliopolis, or the Khorp himet, " chief artificer," of the 
Memphite Ptah. Women could also hold priestly rank, though 
apparently in early times only in the service of goddesses; 
" priestess of Hathor " is a frequent title of well-born ladies in 
the Old Kingdom. At a later date many wealthy dames held 
the office of " musicians " (shemat) in the various temples. 
In the service of the Theban Ammon two priestesses called " the 
Adorer of the God " and the " Wife of the God " occupied very 
influential positions, and towards the Saite period it was by no 
means unusual for the king to secure these offices for his daughters 
and so to strengthen his own royal title. 

5. The Dead and their Cult. — While the worship of the gods 




tended more and more to become a monoply of the state and 
the priests, and provided no adequate outlet for the religious 
cravings of the people themselves, this deficiency was amply 
supplied by the care which they bestowed upon their dead: 
the Egyptians stand alone among the nations of the world in 
the elaborate precautions which they took to secure their own 
welfare beyond the tomb. The belief in immortality, or perhaps 
rather the incapacity to grasp the notion of complete annihilation, 
is traceable from the very earliest times: the simplest graves 
of the prehistoric period, when the corpses were committed to the 
earth in sheepskins and reed mats, seldom lack at least a few 
poor vases or articles of toilet for use in the hereafter. In 
proportion as the prosperity of the land increased, and the 
advance of civilization afforded the technical means, so did 
these primitive burials give place to a more lavish funereal 
equipment. Tombs of brick with a single chamber were suc- 
ceeded by tombs of stone with several chambers, until they really 
merited the name of " houses of eternity " that the Egyptians 
gave to them. The conception of the tomb as the residence of 
the dead is the fundamental notion that underlies all the ritual 
observances in connexion with the dead, just as the idea of the 
temple as the dwelling-place of the god is the basis of the divine 
cult. The parallelism between the attitude of the Egyptians 
towards the dead and their attitude towards the gods is so 
striking that it ought never to be lost sight of: nothing can 
illustrate it better than the manner in which the Osirian doctrines 
came to permeate both kinds of cult. 

The general scheme of Egyptian tombs remained the same 
throughout the whole of the dynastic period, though there were 
Tombs many variations of detail. By preference they were 
built in the Western desert, the Amente, near the 
place where the sun was seen to go to rest, and which seemed 
the natural entrance to the nether world. A deep pit led down 
to the sepulchral chamber where the dead man was deposited 
amid the funereal furniture destined for his use; and no device 
was neglected that might enable him to rest here undisturbed. 
This aim is particularly conspicuous in the pyramids, the gigantic 
tombs which the Pharaohs of the Old Kingdom constructed for 
themselves: the passages that lead to the burial chamber were 
barred at intervals by vast granite blocks, and the narrow 
opening that gave access to them was hidden from view beneath 
the stone casing of the pyramid sides. Quite separate from 
this part of the tomb lay the rooms employed for the cult of 
the dead: their walls were often adorned with pictures from the 
earthly life of the deceased, which it was hoped he might still 
continue to enjoy after death. The innermost chamber was the 
chapel proper: on its western side was sculptured an imitation 
door for the dead man to pass through, when he wished to 
participate in the offerings brought by pious relatives. It was 
of course only the few who could afford elaborate tombs of the 
kind: the poor had to make shift with an unpretentious grave, 
in which the corpse was placed enveloped only by a few rags or 
enclosed in a rough wooden coffin. 

The utmost care was taken to preserve the body itself from 
decay. Before the time of the Middle Kingdom it became usual 
for the rich to have their bodies embalmed. The 
inlaad' intestines were removed and placed in four vases (the 
burial. so-called Canopic jars) in which they were supposed to 
enjoy the protection of the four sons of Horus, the 
man-headed Mesti, the ape-headed Hapi, the jackal Duamutef 
and the falcon Kebhsenuf. The corpse was treated with natron 
and asphalt, and wound in a copious swathing of linen bandage, 
with a mask of linen and stucco on the face. The " mummy " 
thus prepared was then laid on its side like a sleeper, the head 
supported by a head-rest, in a sarcophagus of wood or stone. 
The operations in connexion with the mummy grow more and 
more elaborate towards the end of the Pharaonic period: 
already in the New Kingdom the wealthiest persons had their 
mummies laid in several coffins, each of which was gaudily 
painted with mythological scenes and inscriptions. The costliest 
process of embalmment lasted no less than seventy days. Many 
superstitious rites had to be observed in the course of the process: 

a late book has preserved to us the magical formulae that were 
repeated by the wise kher-heb priest (who in the necropolis 
performed the functions of taricheutes, "embalmer"), as each 
bandage was applied. 

A large number of utensils, articles of furniture and the like 
were placed in the burial-chamber for the use of the dead — jars, 
weapons, mirrors, and even chairs, musical instruments and wigs. 
In the early times statuettes of servants, representing them as 
engaged in their various functions (brewers, bakers, &c), were 
included for the same purpose; they were supposed to perform 
their menial functions for their deceased lord in the future life. 
In the Middle Kingdom these are gradually replaced by small 
models of the mummy itself, and the belief arose that when their 
owner was called upon to perform any distasteful work in the 
nether world, they would answer to his name and do the task 
for him. The later ushebti-figures, little statuettes of wood, 
stone or faience, of which several hundreds are often found in a 
single tomb, are confused survivals of both of the earlier classes 
of statuettes. Still more important than all such funereal 
objects are the books that were placed in the grave for the use 
of the dead: in the pyramids they are written on the walls of 
the sepulchral chamber and the passages leading to it; in the 
Middle Kingdom usually inscribed on the inner sides of the 
sarcophagus; in later times contained in rolls of papyrus. 
The Pyramid texts and the Book of the Dead are the most im- 
portant of these, and teach us much about the dangers and 
needs that attended the dead man beyond the tomb, and 
about the manner in which it was thought they could be 

The burial ceremony itself must have been an imposing 
spectacle. In many cases the mummy had to be conveyed across 
the Nile, and boats were gaily decked out for this purpose. 
On the western bank a stately procession conducted the deceased 
to his last resting-place. At the door of the tomb the final 
ceremonies were performed; they demanded a considerable 
number of actors, chief among whom were the sem-piiest and the 
kher-heb priest. It was a veritable drama that was here enacted, 
and recalled in its incidents the story of Osiris, the divine proto- 
type of all successive generations of the Egyptian dead. 

However carefully the preliminary rites of embalmment and 
burial might have been performed, however sumptuous the 
tomb wherein the dead man reposed, he was never- xhesoal 
theless almost entirely at the mercy of the living for 
his welfare in the other world: he was as dependent on a con- 
tinued cult on the part of the surviving members of his family 
as the gods were dependent on the constant attendance of their 
priests. That portion of a man's individuality which required, 
even after death, food and drink, and the satisfaction of sensuous 
needs, was called by the Egyptians the ka, and represented in 

hieroglyphs by the uplifted hands [_]. This ka was supposed 

to be born together with the person to whom it belonged, and 
on the very rare occasions when it is depicted, wears his exact 
semblance. The conception of this psychical entity is too vaguely 
formulated by the Egyptians and too foreign to modern thought 
to admit of exact translation: of the many renderings that 
have been proposed, perhaps " double " is the most suitable. 
At all events the ka has to be distinguished from the soul, the bai 

(in hieroglyphs^^ or^.), which was of more tangible nature, 

and might be descried hovering around the tomb in the form of a 
bird or in some other shape; for it was thought that the soul 
might assume what shape it would, if the funerary rites had been 
duly attended to. The gods had their ka and bai, and the forms 
attributed to the latter are surprising; thus we read that the 
soul of the sky Nun is Re, that of Osiris the Goat of Mendes, 
the souls of Sobk are crocodiles, and those " of all the gods are 
snakes "; similarly the soul of Ptah was thought to dwell in the 
Apis bull, so that each successive Apis was during its lifetime 
the reincarnation of the god. Other parts of a man's being to 
which at given moments and in particular contexts the Egyptians 
assigned a certain degree of separate existence are the " name " 




ran, the " shadow 


khaibel, and the " corpse ' 

^ , khat. 

It was, however, the ka alone to which the cult of the dead 
was directly addressed. This cult was a positive duty binding 
on the children of a dead man, and doubtless as a rule discharged 
by them with some regularity and conscientiousness; at least, 
on feast-days offerings would be brought to the tomb, and the 
ceremonies of purification and opening the mouth of the deceased 
would be enacted. But there could be little guarantee that later 
generations would perpetuate the cult. It therefore became 
usual under the Old Kingdom for the wealthiest persons to make 
testamentary dispositions by which certain other persons agreed 
for a consideration to observe the required rites at stated periods: 
they received the name of " servants of the ka," and stood in the 
same relation to the deceased as the priests to the gods. Or 
again, contracts might be made with a neighbouring temple, the 
priesthood of which bound itself to reserve for the contracting 
party some portion of the offerings that had already been used 
for the divine cult. There is probably a superstitious reason 
for the preference shown by the dead for offerings of this kind; 
no wish is commoner than that one may receive " bread and beer 
that had gone up on to the altar of the local god," or " with 
which the god had been sated " ; something of the divine sanctity 
still clung about such offerings and made them particularly 
desirable. In spite of all the precautions they took and the 
contracts they made, the Egyptians could never quite rid them- 
selves of the dread that their tombs might decay and their cult 
be neglected; and they sought therefore to obtain by prayers 
and threats what they feared they might lose altogether. The 
occasional visitor to the tomb is reminded by its inscriptions of 
the many virtues of the dead man while he yet lived, and is 
charged, if he be come with empty hands, at least to pronounce 
the funerary formula; it will indeed cost him nothing but " the 
breath of his mouth"! Against the would-be desecrator the 
wrath of the gods is invoked: " with him shall the great god 
reckon there where a reckoning is made." 

The funerary customs that have been described are meaning- 
less except on the supposition that the tomb was the regular 
dwelling-place of the dead. But just as the Egyptians found no 
contradiction between the view of the temple as the residence 
of the god and the conception of him as a cosmic deity, so 
too they often attributed to the dead a continued existence 
quite apart from the tomb. According to a widely-spread 
doctrine of great age the deceased Egyptian was translated to 
the heavens, where he lived on in the form of a star. This theme 
is elaborated with great detail in the Pyramid texts, where it is 
the dead king to whom this destiny is promised. It was perhaps 
only a restricted aristocracy who could aspire to such high 

honour: the ^\ ikh, or " glorified being," who has his place in 

the sky seems often to hold an intermediate position between 
the gods and the rank and file of the dead. But in a few early 
passages the required qualification appears to be rather moral 
integrity than exalted station. The life of the dead man in the 
sky is variously envisaged in different texts: at one moment 
he is spoken of as accompanying the sun-god in his celestial 
bark, at another as a mighty king more powerful than Re 
himself; the crudest fancy of all pictures him as a hunter who 
catches the stars and gods, and cooks and eats them. According 
to another conception that persisted in the imagination of the 
Egyptians longer than any of the ideas just mentioned, the home 
of the dead in the heavens was a fertile region not very different 
form Egypt itself, intersected by canals and abounding in corn 
and fruit; this place was called the Sokhet Earu or " field of 

Even in the oldest texts these beliefs are blended inextricably 
with the Osirian doctrines. It is not so much as king of the dead 
that Osiris here appears, but every deceased Egyptian was 
regarded as himself an Osiris, as having undergone all the 

indignities inflicted upon the god, but finally triumphant over 
the powers of death and evil impersonated by Seth. This notion 
became so popular, that beside it all other views of the dead sink 
into insignificance; it permeates the funerary cult in all its 
stages, and from the Middle Kingdom onwards the dead man is 
regularly called " the Osiris so-afcd-so," just as though he were 
completely identical with the god. One incident of the tale of 
Osiris acquired a deep ethical meaning in connexion with the 
dead. It was related how Seth had brought an accusation 
against Osiris in the great judgment hall of Heliopolis, and how 
the latter, helped by the skilful speaker Thoth, had emerged from 
the ordeal acquitted and triumphant. The belief gradually grew 
up that every dead man would have to face a similar trial before 
he could be admitted to a life of bliss in the other world. A well- 
known vignette in the Book of the Dead depicts the scene. In a 
shrine sits Osiris, the ruler and judge of the dead, accompanied 
by forty-two assessors; and before him stands the balance on 
which the heart of the deceased man is to be weighed against 
Truth; Thoth stands behind and registers the result. The 
words that accompany this picture are still more remarkable : 
they form a long negative confession, in which the dead man 
declares that he has sinned neither against man nor against the 
gods. Not all the sins named are equally heinous according to 
modern conceptions; many of them deal with petty offences 
against religious usages that seem to us but trifling. But it is 
clear that by the time this chapter was penned it was believed 
that no man could attain to happiness in the hereafter if he had 
not been upright, just and charitable in his earthly existence. 
The date at which these conceptions became general is not quite 
certain, but it can hardly be later than the Middle Kingdom, 
when the dead man has the epithet " justified " appended to his 
name in the inscriptions of his tomb. 

It was but a natural wish on the part of the Egyptians that 
they should desire to place their tombs near the traditional 
burying-place of Osiris. By the time of the Xllth Dynasty it 
was thought that this lay in Abydos, the town where the kings 
of the earliest times had been interred. But it was only in a few 
cases that such a wish could be literally fulfilled. It therefore 
became customary for those who possessed the means to dedicate 
at least a tombstone in the neighbourhood of " the staircase of 
the great god," as the sacred spot was called. And those who 
had found occasion to visit Abydos in their lifetime took pleasure 
in recalling the part that they had there taken in the ceremonies 
of Osiris. Such pilgrims doubtless believed that the pious act 
would stand to their credit when the day of death arrived. 

6. Magic. — Among the rites that were celebrated in the temples 
or before the statues of the dead were many the mystical meaning 
of which was but imperfectly understood, though their efficacy 
was never doubted. Symbolical or imitative acts, accompanied 
by spoken formulae of set form and obscure content, accom- 
plished, by some peculiar virtues of their own, results that were 
beyond the power of human hands and brain. The priests and 
certain wise men were the depositaries of this mysterious but 
highly useful art, that was called hik or " magic "; and one of 
the chief differences between gods and men was the superior 
degree in which the former were endowed with magical powers. 
It was but natural that the Egyptians should wish to employ 
magic for their own benefit or self-gratification, and since 
religion put no veto on the practice so long as it was exercised 
within legal bounds, it was put to a widespread use among them. 
When magicians made figures of wax representing men whom 
they desired to injure, this was of course an illegal act like any 
other, and the law stepped in to prevent it: one papyrus that 
has been preserved records the judicial proceedings taken in 
such a case in connexion with the harem conspiracy against 
Rameses III. 

One of the chief purposes for which magic was employed was 
to avert diseases. Among the Egyptians, as in other lands, 
illnesses were supposed to be due to evil spirits or the ghosts of 
dead men who had taken up their abode in the body of the 
sufferer, and they could only be driven thence by charms and 
spells. But out of these primitive notions arose a real medical 




science: when the ailment could be located and its nature 
roughly determined, a more materialistic view was taken of it; 
and many herbs and drugs that were originally used for some 
superstitious reason, when once they had been found to be actually 
effective, easily lost their magical significance and were looked 
upon as natural specifics. It is extremely hard to draw any fixed 
line in Egypt between magic and medicine; but it is curious to 
note that simple diagnoses and prescriptions were employed for 
the more curable diseases, while magical formulae and amulets 
are reserved for those that are harder to cope with, such as the 
bites of snakes and the stings of scorpions. 

The formulae recited for such purposes are not purely cabalistic, 
though inasmuch as mystery is of the very essence of magic, 
foreign words and outlandish names occur in them by preference. 
Often the magician relates some mythical case where a god 
had been afflicted with a disease similar to that of the patient, 
but had finally recovered: a number of such tales were told of 
Horus, who was usually healed by some device of his mother 
Isis, she being accounted as a great enchantress. The mere 
recitation of such similar cases with their happy issue was 
supposed to be magically effective; for almost unlimited power 
was supposed to be inherent in mere words. Often the demon is 
directly invoked, and commanded to come forth. At other times 
the gods are threatened with privations or even destruction if 
they refuse to aid the magician: the Egyptians seem to have 
found little impiety in such a use of the divine name, though 
to us it would seem the utmost degree of profanity when, for 
instance, a magician declares that if his spell prove ineffective, 
he " will cast fire into Mendes and burn up Osiris." 

The verbal spells were always accompanied by some manual 
performance, the tying of magical knots or the preparation of an 
amulet. In these acts particular significance was attached to 
certain numbers: a sevenfold knot, for example, was more 
efficacious than others. Often the formula was written on a 
strip of rag or a scrap of papyrus and tied round the neck of 
the person for whom it was intended. Beads and all kinds of 
amulets could be infused with magical power so as to be potent 
phylacteries to those who wore them. 

In conclusion, it must be emphasized that in Egypt magic 
stands in no contrast or opposition to religion, at least as long 
as it was legitimately used. The religious rites and ceremonies 
are full of it. When a pretence was made of opening, with an 
iron instrument, the mouth of the divine statue, to the accom- 
paniment of recited formulae, this can hardly be termed anything 
but magic. Similarly, the potency attributed to ushebti-figures 
and the copies of the Book of the Dead deposited in the tombs 
is magical in quality. What has been considered under this 
heading, however, is the use that the same principles of magic 
were put to by men in their own practical life and for their own 

Authorities. — An excellent list of books and articles on the 
various topics connected with Egyptian Religion will be found in 
H. O. Lange's article on the subject in P.D. Chantepie de la Saussaye, 
Lehrbuch der Religions geschichte (Tubingen, 1905), vol. i. pp. 172- 
245. Among general works may be especially recommended A. 
Erman, Die agyptische Religion (Berlin, 1905) ; and chapters 2 
and 3 in G. Maspero, Histoire ancienne des peuples de VOrient, les 
origines, vol. i. (Paris, 1895). (A. H. G.) 

D. Egyptian Language and Writing. — Decipherment. — 
Although attempts were made to read Egyptian hiero- 
glyphs so far back as the 17th century, no promise of success 
appeared until the discovery of the Rosetta stone in 1799 
by the French engineers attached to Napoleon's expedition 
to Egypt. This tablet was inscribed with three versions, 
in hieroglyphic, demotic and Greek, of a long decree of the 
Egyptian priests in honour of Ptolemy V., Epiphanes and his 
wife Cleopatra. The Greek and demotic versions were still 
almost perfect, but most of the hieroglyphic text had been 
broken away with the top of the tablet; portions of about half 
of the lines remained, but no single line was complete. In 1802 
J. D. Akerblad, a Swedish orientalist attached to the embassy 
in Paris, identified the proper names of persons which occurred 
in the demotic text, being guided to them by the position of 

their equivalents in the Greek. These names, all of them foreign, 
were written in an alphabet of a limited number of characters, 
and were therefore analysed with comparative ease. 

The hieroglyphic text upon the Rosetta stone was too frag- 
mentary to furnish of itself the key to the decipherment. But the 
study of this with the other scanty monuments and imperfect 
copies of inscriptions that were available enabled the celebrated 
physicist Thomas Young (1773-1829) to make a beginning. 
In an article completed in 1819 and printed (over the initials 
I. J.) in the supplement to the 4th, 5th and 6th editions of the 
Encyclopaedia Britannica (vol. iv., 1824), he published a brief 
account of Egyptian research, with five plates containing the 
" rudiments of an Egyptian vocabulary." It appears that Young 
could place the hieroglyphic, demotic and Greek texts of the 
Rosetta stone very correctly parallel; but he could not accur- 
ately break up the Egyptian sentences into words, much less 
could he attribute to the words their proper sounds. Yet he 
recognized correctly the names of Apis and Re, with many 
groups for words such as " assembly," " good," " name," and 
important signs such as those which distinguish feminine words. 
In a bad copy of another monument he rightly guessed the royal 
name of Berenice in its cartouche by the side of that of Ptolemy, 
which was already known from its occurrence on the Rosetta 
stone. He considered that these names must be written in 
phonetic characters in the hieroglyphic as in demotic, but he 
failed to analyse them correctly. It was clear, nowever, that 
with more materials and perseverance such efforts after decipher- 
ment must eventually succeed. 

Meanwhile J. F. Champollion " le Jeune " (see Champollion; 
and Hartleben, Champollion, sein Leben und sein Werk, Berlin, 
1906) had devoted his energies whole-heartedly since 1802, 
when he was only eleven years old, to preparing himself for the 
solution of the Egyptian problem, by wide linguistic and historical 
studies, and above all by familiarizing himself with every scrap 
of Egyptian writing which he could find. By 1818 he made many 
equations between the demotic and the hieroglyphic characters, 
and was able to transcribe the demotic names of Ptolemy and 
Cleopatra into hieroglyphics. At length, in January 1822, a 
copy of the hieroglyphic inscription on the Bankes obelisk, 
which had long been fruitlessly in the hands of Young, reached 
the French savant. On the base of this obelisk was engraved 
a Greek inscription in honour of Ptolemy Euergetes II. and 
Cleopatra; of the two cartouches on the obelisk one was of 
Ptolemy, the other was easily recognized as that of Cleopatra, 
spelt nearly as in Champollion's experimental transcript of the 
demotic name, only more fully. This discovery, and the recog- 
nition of the name Alexander, gave fourteen alphabetic signs, 
including homophones, with ascertained values. Starting from 
these, by the beginning of September Champollion had analysed 
a long series of Ptolemaic and Roman cartouches. His next 
triumph was on the 14th of September, when he read the names 
of the ancient Pharaohs Rameses and Tethmosis in some drawings 
just arrived from Egypt, proving that his alphabetic characters 
were employed, in conjunction with syllabic signs, for spelling 
native names; this gave him the assurance that his discovery 
touched the essential nature of the Egyptian writing and not 
merely, as had been contended, a special cipher for the foreign 
words which might be quite inapplicable to the rest of the 
inscriptions. His progress continued unchecked, and before 
the end of the year the connexion of ancient Egyptian and 
Coptic was clearly established. Subsequently visits to the 
museums of Italy and an expedition to Egypt in 1828-1829 fur- 
nished Champollion with ample materials. The Pricis du systlme 
hiiroglyphique (1st ed. 1823, 2nd ed. 1828) contained the philo- 
logical results of his decipherments down to a certain point. 
But his MS. collections were vast, and his illness after the 
strenuous labours of the expedition and his early death in 1832 
left all in confusion. The Grammaire egyptienne and Dictionnavre 
Sgyptien, edited from these MSS. by his brother, precious as 
they were, must be a very imperfect register of the height of his 
attainments. In his last years he was able to translate long 
texts in hieroglyphic and in hieratic of the New Kingdom and 




of the later periods with some accuracy, and his comprehension 
of demotic was considerable.. Champollion outdistanced all his 
competitors from the first, and had practically nothing to thank 
them for except material to work on, and too often that had been 
intentionally withheld from him. In eleven years he broke 
ground in all directions; if the ordinary span of life had been 
allowed him, with twenty or thirty more years of labour he might 
have brought order into the chaos of different ages and styles 
of language. and writing; but, as it was, the task of co-ordination 
remained to be done by others. For one year, before his illness 
incapacitated him, Champollion held a professorship in Paris; 
but of his pupils and fellow-workers, F. P. Salvolini, insincere 
and self-seeking, died young, and IppolitoRosellini (1800- 1843) 
showed little original power. From 1832 to 1837 there was a 
pause in the march of Egyptology, and it seemed as if the young 
science might be overwhelmed by the storm of doubts and detrac- 
tion that was poured upon it by the enemies of Champollion. 
Then, however, Lepsius in Germany and Samuel Birch in England 
took up the thread where the master had dropped it, and E. de 
Roug6, H. Brugsch, Francois Joseph Chabas and a number of 
lesser lights quickly followed. Brugsch (q.v.) was the author of a 
hieroglyphic and demotic dictionary which still holds the field, 
and from time to time carried forward the study of demotic by a 
giant's stride. De Rouge (d. 1872) in France was a brilliant 
translator of hieroglyphic texts and the author of an important 
grammatical work. Chabas (1817-1882) especially addressed 
himself to the reading of the hieratic texts' of the New Kingdom. 
By such labours after forty years the results attained by Cham- 
pollion in decipherment were entirely superseded. Yet, while 
the values of the signs were for the most part well ascertained, 
and the meanings of most works fixed with some degree of 
accuracy, few grammatical rules had as yet been established, 
the varieties of the language at different periods had not been 
defined, and the origins of the hieroglyphs and of their values 
had not been investigated beyond the most obvious points. 
At this time a rare translator of Egyptian texts in all branches 
was arising in G. Maspero (q.v.), while E. Revillout addressed 
himself with success to the task of interpreting the legal docu- 
ments of demotic which had been almost entirely neglected for 
thirty years. But the honour of inaugurating an epoch marked 
by greater precision belongs to Germany. The study of Coptic 
had begun in Europe early in the 17 th century, and reached a 
high level in the work of the Dane Georg Zoega (1 755-1809) at 
the end of the 18th century. In 1835, too late for Champollion 
to use it, Amadeo Peyron (1 785-1870) of Turin published a 
Coptic lexicon of great merit which is still standard, though far 
from satisfying the needs of scholars of the present day. In 1880 
Ludwig Stern (Koptische Grammatik) admirably classified the 
grammatical forms of Coptic. The much more difficult task of 
recovering the grammar of Egyptian has occupied thirty 
years of special study by Adolf Erman and his school at 
Berlin, and has now reached an advanced stage. The greater 
part of Egyptian texts after the Middle Kingdom having been 
written in what was even then practically a dead language, 
as dead as Latin was to the medieval monks in Italy who wrote 
and spoke it, Erman selected for special investigation those texts 
which really represented the growth of the language at different 
periods, and, as he passed from one epoch to another, compared 
and consolidated his results. 

The Neuagyptische Grammatik (1880) dealt with texts written 
in the vulgar dialect of the New Kingdom (Dyns. XVIII. to XX.). 
Next followed, in the Zeitschrift fur agyptische Sprache und Alter- 
thumskunde, studies on the Old Kingdom inscription of Una, and the 
Middle Kingdom contracts of Assiut, as well as on an " Old Coptic " 
text of the 3rd century a.d. At this point a papyrus of stories 
written in the popular language of the Middle Kingdom provided 
Erman with a stepping-stone from Old Egyptian to the Late 
Egyptian of the Neuagyptische Grammatik, and gave the connexions 
that would bind solidly together the whole structure of Egyptian 
grammar (see Sprache des Papyrus Westcar, 1889). The very archaic 
pyramid texts enabled him to sketch the grammar of the earliest 
known form of Egyptian (Zeitschrift d. Deutsch. Morgenl. Gesellschaft, 
1892), and in 1894 he was able to write a little manual of Egyptian 
for beginners (Agyptische Grammatik, 2nd ed., 1902), centring on 
the language of the standard inscriptions of the Middle and New 

Kingdoms, but accompanying the main sketch with references to 
earlier and later forms. Of the work of Erman's pupils we may 
mention G. Steindorff's little Koptische Grammatik (1894, ed. 1904), 
improving greatly on Stern's standard work in regard to phonology 
and the relationship of Coptic forms to Egyptian, and K. Sethe's Das 
Agyptische Verbum (1899). The latter is an extensive monograph on 
the verb in Egyptian and Coptic by a brilliant and laborious philolo- 
gist. Owing to the very imperfect notation of sound in the writing, 
the highly important subject of the verbal roots and verbal forms 
was perhaps the obscurest branch of Egyptian grammar when Sethe 
first attacked it in 1895. The subject has been reviewed by Erman, 
Die Flexion des dgyptischen Verbums in the Sitzungsberichle of the 
Berlin Academy, 1900. The Berlin school, having settled the main 
lines of the grammar, next turned its attention to lexicography. It 
has devised a scheme, founded on that for the Latin Thesaurus of 
the Berlin Academy, which almost mechanically sorts the whole 
number of occurrences of every word in any text examined. Scholars 
in England, America and Denmark, as well as in Germany, have 
taken part in this great enterprise, and though the completion of it 
may be far off, the collections of classified material already made 
are very valuable for consultation. 1 At present Egyptologists 
depend on Heinrich Brugsch's admirable but somewhat antiquated 
Worlerbuch and on Levi's useful but entirely uncritical Vocabolario. 
Though demotic has not yet received serious attention at Berlin, 
the influence of that great school has made itself felt amongst 
demotists, especially in Switzerland, Germany, America and 
England. The death of Heinrich Brugsch in 1895 was a very severe 
blow to demotic studies; but it must be admitted that his brilliant 
gifts lay in other directions than exact grammatical analysis. Apart 
from their philological interest, as giving the history of a remarkable 
language during a period of several thousand years, the grammatical 
studies of the last quarter of the 19th century and afterwards are 
beginning to bear fruit in regard to the exact interpretation of 
historical documents on Egyptian monuments and papyri. Not 
long ago the supposed meaning of these was extracted chiefly by 
brilliant guessing, and the published translations of even the best 
scholars could carry no guarantee of more than approximate exacti- 
tude, where the sense depended at all on correct recognition of the 
syntax. Now the translator proceeds in Egyptian with some of the 
sureness with which he would deal with Latin or Greek. The mean- 
ing of many words may be still unknown, and many constructions 
are still obscure; but at least he can distinguish fairly between a 
correct text and a corrupt text. Egyptian writing lent itself only 
too easily to misunderstanding, and the writings of one period were 
but half intelligible to the learned scribes of another. The mistaken 
readings of the old inscriptions by the priests at Abydos (Table of 
Abydos), when attempting to record the names of the kings of the 
1st Dynasty on the walls of the temple of Seti I., are now admitted 
on all sides; and no palaeographer, whether his field be Greek, Latin, 
Arabic, Persian or any other class of MSS., will be surprised to hear 
that the Egyptian papyri and inscriptions abound in corruptions and 
mistakes. The translator of to-day can, if he wishes, mark where 
certainty ends and mere conjecture begins, and it is to be hoped that 
advantage will be taken more widely of this new power. The 
Egyptologist who has long lived in the realm of conjecture is too 
prone to consider any series of guesses good enough to serve as a 
translation, and forgets to insert the notes of interrogation which 
would warn workers in other fields from implicit trust. 

Language and Writing. — The history of the Egyptian language 
is evidenced by documents extending over a very long range of 
time. They begin with the primitive inscriptions of the 1st 
Dynasty (not later than 3300 B.C.) and end with the latest Coptic 
compositions of about the 14th century a.d. The bulk of the 
hieroglyphic inscriptions are written in a more or less artificial 
literary language; but in business documents, letters, popular 
tales, &c, the scribes often adhered closely to the living form of 
the tongue, and thus reveal its progressive changes. 

The stages of the language are now distinguished as follows: — 
Old Egyptian. — This is properly the language of the Old 
Kingdom. In it we have (a) the recently discovered inscriptions 
of the 1st Dynasty, too brief and concise to throw much light on 
the language of that time; and the great collections of spells 
and ritual texts found inscribed in the Pyramids of the Vth 
and Vlth Dynasties, which must even then have been of high 
antiquity, though they contain later additions made in the same 
style, (b) A few historical texts and an abundance of short 
inscriptions representing the language of the IVth, Vth and Vlth 
Dynasties. The ordinary literary language of the later monu- 
ments is modelled on Old Egyptian. It is often much affected 

1 Annual reports of the progress of the work are printed in the 
Sitzungsberichte of the Berlin Academy of Sciences ; see also Erman, 
Zur dgyptischen Spro.chforschung, ib. for 1907, p. 400, showing the 
general trend of the results. 




by contemporary speech, but preserves in the main the character- 
istics of the language of the Old Kingdom. 

Middle and Late Egyptian. — These represent the vulgar speech 
of the Middle and New Kingdoms respectively. The former is 
found chiefly in tales, letters, &c, written in hieratic on papyri 
of the XIII th Dynasty to the end of the Middle Kingdom; also 
in some inscriptions of the XVIIIth Dynasty. Late Egyptian is 
seen in hieratic papyri of the XVIIIth to the XXIst Dynasties. 
The spelling of Late Egyptian is very extraordinary, full of false 
etymologies, otiose signs, &c, the old orthography being quite 
unable to adapt itself neatly to the profoundly modified language; 
nevertheless, this clumsy spelling is expressive, and the very 
mistakes are instructive as to the pronunciation. 

Demotic. — Demotic Egyptian seems to represent approximately 
the vulgar speech of the Saite period, and is written in the 
" demotic " character, which may be traced back to the XXVIth 
Dynasty, if not to a still earlier time. With progressive changes, 
this form of the language is found in documents reaching down 
to the fall of Paganism in the 4th century a.d. 1 Under the later 
Ptolemies and the Roman rule documents in Greek are more 
abundant than in demotic, and the language of the ruling classes 
must have begun to penetrate the masses deeply. 

Coptic. — This, in the main, represents the popular language of 
early Christian Egypt from the 3rd to perhaps the 10th century 
a.d., when the growth of Coptic as a literary language must have 
ceased. The Greek alphabet, reinforced by a few signs borrowed 
from demotic, rendered the spoken tongue so accurately that four 
distinct, though closely allied, dialects are readily distinguishable 
in Coptic MSS.; ample remains are found of renderings of the 
Scriptures into all these dialects. The distinctions between the 
dialects consist largely in pronunciation, but extend also to the 
vocabulary, word-formation and syntax. Such interchanges are 
found as I for r, (5~ (k, ch) for 2C (dj), final i for final e, a for e, 
a for 0. Early in the and century a.d., pagan Egyptians, or 
perhaps foreigners settled in Egypt, essayed, as yet unskilfully, 
to write the native language in Greek letters. This Old Coptic, 
as it is termed, was still almost entirely free from Greek loan- 
words, and its strong archaisms are doubtless accounted for by 
the literary language, even in its most " vulgar " forms, having 
moved more slowly than the speech of the people. Christian 
Coptic, though probably at first contemporary with some docu- 
ments of Old Coptic, contrasts strongly with the latter. The 
monks whose task it was to perfect the adaptation of the alphabet 
to the dialects of Egypt and translate the Scriptures out of the 
Greek, flung away all pagan traditions. It is clear that the basis 
which they chose for the new literature was the simplest language 
of daily life in the monasteries, charged as it was with expressions 
taken from Greek, pre-eminently the language of patristic 
Christianity. There is evidence that the amount of stress on 
syllables, and the consequent length of vowels, varied greatly in 
spoken Coptic, and that the variation gave much trouble to the 
scribes; the early Christian writers must have taken as a model 
for each dialect the deliberate speech of grave elders or preachers, 
and so secured a uniform system of accentuation. The remains 
of Old Coptic, though very instructive in their marked peculi- 
arities, are as yet too few for definite classification. The main 
divisions of Christian Coptic as recognized and named at present 
are: Sahidic (formerly called Theban), spoken in the upper 
Thebais; Akhmimic, in the neighbourhood of Akhmim, but 
driven out by Sahidic about the 5th century; Fayumic, in the 
Fayum (formerly named wrongly " Bashmuric," from a province 
of the Delta); Bohairic, the dialect of the "coast district" 
(formerly named "Memphite"), spoken in the north-western 
Delta. Coptic, much alloyed with Arabic, was spoken in Upper 
Egypt as late as the 15th century, but it has long been a dead 
language. 2 Sahidic and Bohairic are the most important 

1 In the temple of. Philae, where the worship of Isis was permitted 
to continue till the reign of Justinian, Brugsch found demotic 
inscriptions with dates to the end of the 5th century. 

2 The Arabic dialects, which gradually displaced Coptic as 
Mahommedanism supplanted Christianity, adopted but few words 
)( the old native stock. 

dialects, each of these having left abundant remains; the former 
spread over the Whole of Upper Egypt, and the latter since the 
14th century has been the language of the sacred books of 
Christianity throughout the country, owing to the hierarchical 
importance of Alexandria and the influence of the ancient 
monasteries established in the north-western desert. 

The above stages of the Egyptian language are not defined 
with absolute clearness. Progress is seen from dynasty to 
dynasty or from century to century. New Egyptian shades off 
almost imperceptibly into demotic, and it may be hoped that 
gaps which now exist in the development will be filled by further 

Coptic is the only stage of the language in which the spelling 
gives a clear idea of the pronunciation. It is therefore the 
mainstay of the scholar in investigating or restoring the word- 
forms of the ancient language. Greek transcriptions of Egyptian 
names and words are valuable as evidence for the vocalization 
of Egyptian. Such are found from the 6th century B.C. in the 
inscription of Abu Simbel, from the 5th in Herodotus, &c, 
and abound in Ptolemaic and later documents from the beginning 
of the 3rd century B.C. onwards. At first sight they may seem 
inaccurate, but on closer examination the Graecizing is seen to 
follow definite rules, especially in the Ptolemaic period. A few 
cuneiform transcriptions, reaching as far back as the XVIIIth 
Dynasty, give valuable hints as to how Egyptian was pronounced 
in the 15th century B.C. Coptic itself is of course quite inadequate 
to enable us to restore Old Egyptian. In it the Old Egyptian 
verbal forms are mostly replaced by periphrases; though the 
strong roots are often preserved entire, the weaker consonants 
and the * have largely or entirely disappeared, so that the 
language appears as one of biliteral rather than triliteral roots. 
Coptic is strongly impregnated with Greek words adopted late; 
moreover, a certain number of Semitic loan-words flowed into 
Egyptian at all ages, and especially from the 16th century B.C. 
onwards, displacing earlier words. It is only by the most careful 
scrutiny, or the exercise of the most piercing insight, that the 
imperfectly spelled Egyptian has been made to yield up one 
grammatical secret after another in the light brought to bear 
upon it from Coptic. Demotic grammar ought soon to be 
thoroughly comprehensible in its forms, and the study of Late 
Egyptian should not stand far behind that of demotic. On the 
other hand, Middle Egyptian, and still more Old Egyptian, 
which is separated from Middle Egyptian by a wide gap, will 
perhaps always be to us little more than consonantal skeletons, 
the flesh and blood of their vocalization being for the most part 
irretrievably lost. 3 

In common with the Semitic languages, the Berber languages 
of North Africa, and the Cushite languages of North-East Africa, 
Egyptian of all periods possesses grammatical gender,- expressing 
masculine and feminine. Singularly few language groups have 
this peculiarity; and our own great Indo-European group, 
which possesses it, is distinguished from those above mentioned 
by having the neuter gender in addition. The characteristic 
triliteral roots of all the Semitic languages seemed to separate 
them widely from others; but certain traits have caused the 
Egyptian, Berber and Cushite groups to be classed together as 
three subfamilies of a Hamitic group, remotely related to the 
Semitic. The biliteral character of Coptic, and the biliteralism 
which was believed to exist in Egyptian, led philologists to suspect 
that Egyptian might be a surviving witness to that far-off stage 
of the Semitic languages when triliteral roots had not yet been 
formed from presumed original biliterals; Sethe's investigations, 
however, prove that the Coptic biliterals are themselves derived 
from Old Egyptian triliterals, and that the triliteral roots enor- 
mously preponderated in Egyptian of the earliest known form; 
that view is, therefore, no longer tenable. Many remarkable 

3 In the articles referring to matters of Egyptology in this edition, 
Graecized forms of Old Egyptian names, where they exist, are 
commonly employed ; in other cases names are rendered by their 
actual equivalents in Coptic or by analogous forms. Failing all 
such means, recourse is had to the usual conventional renderings 
of hieroglyphic spelling, a more precise transcription of the con- 
sonants in the latter being sometimes added. 




resemblances have been observed in the grammatical struc- 
ture of the Berber and Cushite groups with Semitic (cf . H. 
Zimmern, Vergleichende Grammatik d. semitischen Sprachen, 
Berlin, 1898, especially pronouns and verbs); but the relation- 
ship must be very distant, and there are no ancient documents 
that can take back the history of any one of those languages 
more than a few centuries. Their connexion with Semitic and 
Egyptian, therefore, remains at present an obscure though 
probable hypothesis. On the other hand, Egyptian is certainly 
related to Semitic. Even before the triliterality of Old Egyptian 
was recognized, Erman showed that the so-called pseudo- 
participle had been really in meaning and in form a precise 
analogue of the Semitic perfect, though its original employment 
was almost obsolete in the time of the earliest known texts. 
Triliteralism is considered the most essential and most peculiar 
feature of Semitic. But there are, besides, many other resem- 
blances in structure between the Semitic languages and Egyptian, 
so that, although the two vocabularies present few points of 
clear contact, there is reason to believeThat Egyptian was origin- 
ally a characteristic member of the Semitic family of languages. 
See Erman, " Das Verhaltnis d. agyptischen zu d. semitischen 
Sprachen" (Zeitschrift d. deutschen morgenl. Gesellschaft, 1892); 
Zimmern, Vergl. Gram., 1898; Erman, " Flexion d. agyptischen 
Verbums " (Sitzungsberichte d. Berl. Akad., 1900). The Egyptians 
proper are not, and so far as we can tell never were, Semitic in 
physical feature. As a possible explanation of the facts, Erman 
supposes that a horde of conquering Semites, like the Arabs 
of a later day, imposed their language on the country, but dis- 
appeared, being weakened by the climate or absorbed by the 
native population. The latter acquired the Semitic language 
imperfectly from their conquerors; they expressed the verbal 
conjugations by periphrases, mispronounced the consonants, and 
so changed greatly the appearance of the vocabulary, which 
also would certainly contain a large proportion of native non- 
Semitic roots. Strong consonants gave place to weak consonants 
(as O has done to], in the modern Arabic of Egypt), and then 
the weak consonants disappearing altogether produced biliterals 
from the triliterals. Much of this must have taken place, 
according to the theory, in the prehistoric period; but the loss 
of weak consonants, of v, and of one of two repeated consonants, 
and the development of periphrastic conjugations continued to 
the end. The typical Coptic root thus became biliteral rather 
than triliteral, and the verb, by means of periphrases, developed 
tenses of remarkable precision. Such verbal resemblances as 
exist between Coptic and Semitic are largely due to late exchanges 
with Semitic neighbours. 

The following sketch of the Egyptian language, mainly in its 
earliest form, which dates from some three or four thousand years 
B.C., is founded upon Erman's works. It will serve to contrast with 
Coptic grammar on the one hand and Semitic grammar on the other. 

The Egyptian Alphabet 

(J =/; so conventionally transcribed since it unites two values, 
' being sometimes y but often x (especially at the beginning 

of words), and from the earliest times used in a manner 
corresponding to the Arabic hamza, to indicate a pros- 
thetic vowel. Often lost. 

» * and j](] are frequently employed for y. 


= •(«); easily lost or changes to y. 

= '(y); lost in Coptic. This rare sound, well known in 
Semitic, occurs also in Berber and Cushite languages. 

= w; often changes to y. 

= 6. 






= m 




» = r; often lost, or changes to y. r and I are distinguished 
in later demotic and in Coptic. * 

>■ distinction lost in Coptic. 

= h\ in Coptic ty (sh) or I) (kh) correspond to it. 

= £; generally written withCZ3(s) in the Old Kingdom, 
but »—=> corresponds to kh in Coptic. 




distinction lost at the end of the Old Kingdom. 
=i ' 

= f (sh). 

= g; Coptic K. 

= £] Coptic K;or(!f"',2C. according to dialect. 
= gj Coptic K; or g m 

= t; often lost at the end of words. 

= * (0); often changes to (, otherwise Coptic "T ; or X. <5~. 

= d; in Coptic reduced to t. 

— i (2) ; often changes to d, Coptic 7" ; otherwise in Coptic jS.. 

Egyptian roots consist of consonants and semi-consonants only, 
the inflexion being effected by internal vowel-change and the 
addition of consonants or vowels at the beginning or end. The 
Egyptian system of writing, as opposed to the Coptic, showed only 
the consonantal skeletons of words: it could not record internal 
vowel-changes; and semi-consonants, even when radicals, were 
often omitted in writing. 

Sing. 1. c. Iw (?) later wi. PI. 1. c. n. Du. 

2. m. kui. 2. c. tn. 2. c. tny. 

I. tn. 

3. m. *fy, surviving only 3. m. in, early lost, 3. c. iny. 

in a special except as 

verbal form. suffix, 

f. iy. f . *il surviving 

as 3. c. 
From these are derived the suffixes, which are shortened forms 
attached to nouns to express the possessor, and to verbs to express 
the subject. In the latter case the verb was probably in the participle, 
so that idm'd-in, " they hear," is literally " hearing are they." The 
singular suffixes are: (1) c.-i; (2) m. -k, f. -t; (3) m. -/, f. -i; — the 
dual and plural have no special forms. 

Another series of absolute pronouns is: (2) m. iwt, ta>; f. tmt, tm; 
(3) m. iwt, iw; f. itt, it. Of these hut, tmt, &c, are emphatic forms. 

Many of the above absolute pronouns were almost obsolete even 
in the Old Kingdom. In ordinary texts some survive, especially 
as objects of verbs, namely, wi, tw, In, sw, si. The suffixes of all 
numbers and persons except the dual were in full use throughout, to 
Coptic; sn, however, giving way to a new suffix, -w, which developed 
first in the New Kingdom. 

Another absolute pronoun of the first person is ink, A-ltOKi like 
Heb. "33N. It is associated with a series for the second and third 
persons: nt-k, nt-t, nt-f, nt-sn, &c. ; but from their history, use 
and form, it seems probable that the last are of later formation, and 
are not to be connected with the Semitic pronouns (chiefly of the 
2nd person) resembling them. 


There are several series based on m. p; i. I; pi. n; but n as a 
plural seems later than the other two. From them are developed 
a weak demonstrative to which possessive suffixes can be attached, 
producing the definite and possessive articles (J», t>, w>, " the," 
P*y-f< "his," P'y-s " her," &c.) of Middle Egyptian and the later 


Two genders, m. (ending w, or nothing), f. (ending t). Three 
numbers: singular, dual (m. wi, f. ti, gradually became obsolete), 
plural (m. w; f. wi). No case-endings are recognizable, but con- 
struct forms — to judge by Coptic — were in use. Masculine and 
feminine nouns of instrument or material are formed from verbal 
roots by prefixing m; e.g. m-sdm-t, " stibium," from sdm, " paint 
the eye." Substantives and adjectives are formed from substan- 
tives and prepositions by the addition of y in the masculine; e.g. 
n-t, " city, ' nt-y, " belonging to a city," " citizen "; hr, " upon," 
hr-y (f. hr-t; pi. hr-w), " upper." This is not unlike the Semitic 
nisbe ending iy, ay (e.g. Ar. beled, " city," beledi, " belonging to a 
city "). Adjectives follow the nouns they qualify. 





1, w; 2, in; 3, h,mt\ 4, fdw; 5, dw'; 6, sis (or ot«?); 7, 
sfh; 8, £m»; 9, ^2; 10, mt. 2, 6, 7, 8 and 9 (?) resemble 
Semitic numerals. 20 and 30 (m<b) had special names; 40-90 were 
named as if plurals of the units 4-9, as in Semitic. 100, Snt; 1000, 
£,; 10,000, zb-; 1 00,000, bfnw. 


The forms observable in hieroglyphic writing lead to the following 
classification : — 

. Often showing traces of an original 
in. inf.; in early times very 

Strong Verbs. Biliteral 

Weak Verbs. 


Buadriliteral J 
uinqueliteral 1 

11. geminatae 

in. gem. 
in. inf. 

iv. inf. 

Very numerous. 
("Generally formed by reduplication. 
In Late Egyptian they were no 
longer inflected, and were con- 
jugated with the help of Iry, 

" do -" 
Properly triliterals, but, with the 

2nd or 3rd radical alike, these 

coalesced in many forms where 

no vowel intervened, and gave 

the word the appearance of a 



Numerous, in. iv, and ill. i were 
unified early. Some very 
common verbs, " do," " give," 
" come," " bring " are irregular. 

Partly derived from adjectival 
formations in y, from nouns and 
infinitives: — e.g. i-lp, inf. sipt; 
adj. Upty; verb (4 lit.), sipty. 

Many verbs with weak consonants — iy, iw, 11. inf. (m[w]t), and those 
with n — are particularly difficult to trace accurately, owing to 
defective writing. 

It seems that all the above classes may be divided into two main 
groups, according to the form of the infinitive :— with masculine in- 
finitive the strong triliteral type, and with feminine infinitive the 
type of the III. inf. The former group includes all except ill. inf., 
iv. inf., and the causative of the biliterals, which belong to the 
second group. 

It is probable that the verb had a special form denoting condition, 
as in Arabic. There was a causative form prefixing £, and traces of 
forms resembling Pi'd and Niphal are observed. Some roots are re- 
duplicated wholly or in part with a frequentative meaning, and there 
are traces of gemination of radicals. 

Pseudo-Participle. — In very early texts this is the past indicative, 
but more commonly it is used in sentences such as, gm-n-f wl 'b'-kwl, 
" he found me I stood," i.e. " he found me standing." The in- 
dicative use was soon given up and the pseudo-participle was 
employed only as predicate, especially indicating a state ; e.g. ntr-t 
Sm-ti, " the goddess goes "; Iw-k wd>-tl, " thou art prosperous." 
The endings were almost entirely lost in New Egyptian. For early 
times they stand thus : — 

Sing. 3. masc. I, late w. Dual wil. PI. w. 

fem. tl. t'dw tl. 

2. masc. tl tlwny. 

fern. tl 

I. c. kwl. wyn. 

The pseudo-participle seems, by its inflexion, to have been the 
perfect of the original Semitic conjugation. The simplest form 
being that of the 3rd person, it is best arranged like the correspond- 
ing tense in Semitic grammars, beginning with that person. There 
is no trace of the Semitic imperfect in Egyptian. The ordinary 
conjugation is formed quite differently. The verbal stem is here 
followed by the subject-suffix or substantive— Sdm-f, " he hears "; 
" sdmw stn, " the king hears." It is varied by the addition of 
particles, &c, n, In, jtr, tw, thus: — 

sdm-f, " he hears " ; sdm-w-f, " he is heard " (pi. s^m-'ii-sn, " they 
are heard ") ; sdm-tw-f, "he is heard "; kdm-n-f, " he heard ' ; 
idm-n-tw-f, "he was heard"; also, Jdm-ln-f, s&m-far-f, s"£m-k>-f. 
Each form has special uses, generally difficult to define. Sdm-f seems 
rather to be imperfect, sdm-n-f perfect, and generally to express the 
past. Later, sdm-f is ordinarily expressed by periphrases ; but by 
the loss of n, sim-n-f became itself sdm-f, which is the ordinary past 
in demotic. Coptic preserves sdm-f forms of many verbs in its 
causative (e.g. TAMljOtJ " cause him to live," from Egyptian 
dX4'nji-f), and, in its periphrastic conjugation, the same forms of 
wn, " be," and iry, " do." With sdm-f (sedmo-f) was a more 
emphatic form (esdomef), at any rate in the weak verbs. 

The above, with the relative forms mentioned below, are supposed 
by Erman to be derived from the participle, which is placed first for 
emphasis: thus, s&m-w Stn, "hearing is the king"; Sdm-f, for 
fdm-fy, " hearing he is." This Egyptian paraphrase of Semitic is 
just like the Irish paraphrase of English, " It is hearing he is." 

The imperative shows no ending in the singular; in the plural it 
has y, and later 10; cf. Semitic imperative. 

The infinitive is of special importance on account of its being 
preserved very fully in Coptic. It is generally of masculine form, 
but feminine in III. inf. (as in Semitic), and in causatives of biliterals. 

There are relative forms of Sdm-f and sdm-n-f, respectively Sdm-w-f 
(masc.), Sdm-t-n-f (fem.), &c. They are used when the relative is the 
object of the relative sentence, or has any other position than the 
subject. Thus Sdm-t-f may mean " she whom he hears," " she who[se 
praises] he hears," " she [to] whom he hears [someone speaking]," 
&c. There are close analogies between the function of the relative 
particles in Egyptian and Semitic; and the Berber languages 
possess a relative form of the verb. 

Participles.— These are active and passive, perfect and imperfect, 
in the old language, but all are replaced by periphrases in Coptic. 

Verbal Adjectives. — There is a peculiar formation, Sdm-ty-fy, " he 
who shall hear," probably meaning originally " he is a hearer," 
Sdm-ty being an adjective in y formed from a feminine (/) form of 
the infinitive, which is occasionally found even in triliteral verbs; 
the endings are: sing., masc. ty-fy, fem. ty-Sy; pi., masc. ty-sn, fem, 
ty-st. It is found only in Old Egyptian. 

Particles.— There seems to be no special formation for adverbs, 
and little use is made of adverbial expressions. Prepositions, simple 
and compound, are numerous. Some of the commonest simple 
prepositions are n " for," r " to," m " in, from," h,r " upon." A few 
enclitic conjunctions exist, but they are indefinite in meaning — swt 
a vague " but," grt a vague " moreover," &c. 

Coptic presents a remarkable contrast to Egyptian in the pre- 
cision of its periphrastic conjugation. There are two present tenses, 
an imperfect, two perfects, a pluperfect, a present and a past fre- 
quentative, and three futures besides future perfect ; there are also 
conjunctive and optative forms. The negatives of some of these are 
expressed by special prefixes. The gradual growth of these new forms 
can be traced through all the stages of Egyptian. Throughout the 
history of the language we note an increasing tendency to periphrasis ; 
but there was no great advance towards precision before demotic. 
In demotic there are distinguishable a present tense, imperfect, 
perfect, frequentative, future, future perfect, conjunctive and 
optative; also present, past and future negatives, &c. The passive 
was extinct before demotic ; demotic and Coptic express it, clumsily 
it must be confessed, by an impersonal " they," e.g. " they bore 
him " stands for " he was born." 

It is worth noting how, in other departments besides the verb, 
the Egyptian language was far better adapted to practical ends 
during and after the period of the Deltaic dynasties (XXII.-XXX.) 
than ever it was before. It was both simplified and enriched. The 
inflexions rapidly disappeared and little was left of the distinctions 
between masculine and feminine, singular, dual and plural — except 
in the pronouns. The dual number had been given up entirely at 
an earlier date. The pronouns, both personal and demonstrative, 
retained their forms very fully. As prefixes, suffixes and articles, 
they, together with some auxiliary verbs, provided the principal 
mechanism of the renovated language. An abundant supply of 
useful adverbs was gradually accumulated, as well as conjunctions, 
so far as the functions of the latter were not already performed by 
the verbal prefixes. These great improvements in the language 
correspond to great changes in the economic condition of the 
country they were the result of active trade and constant inter- 
course of all classes of Egyptians with foreigners from Europe 
and Asia. Probably the best stage of Egyptian speech was that 
which immediately preceded Coptic. Though Coptic is here and 
there more exactly expressive than the best demotic, it was spoilt 
by too much Greek, duplicating and too often expelling native 
expressions that were already adequate for its very simple require- 
ments. Above all, it is clumsily pleonastic. 

The Writing 

The ancient Egyptian system of writing, so far as we know, 
originated, developed and finally expired strictly within the limits 
of the Nile Valley. The germ of its existence may have come from 
without, but, as we know it, it is essentially Egyptian and intended 
for the expression of the Egyptian language. About the 1st 
century B.C., however, the semi-barbarous rulers of the Ethiopian 
kingdoms of Meroe and Napata contrived the " Meroitic " alphabet, 
founded on Egyptian writing, and comprising both a hieroglyphic 
and a cursive form (see Ethiopia). As yet both of these kinds 
of Nubian writing are undeciphered. Egyptian hieroglyphic was 
carried by eonquest into Syria, certainly under the XVIIIth 
Dynasty, and again under the XXVlth for the engraving of Egyptian 
inscriptions; but in the earlier period the cuneiform syllabary, 
and in the later the " Phoenician alphabet, had obtained a firm 
hold there, and we may be sure that no attempt was made to substi- 
tute the Egyptian system for the latter. Cuneiform tablets in Syria, 
however, seem almost confined to the period of the XVIIIth Dynasty. 
Although it cannot be proved it seems quite possible that the traders 
of Phoenicia and the Aegean adopted the papyrus and Egyptian 
hieratic writing together, before the end of the New Kingdom, and 
developed their " Phoenician " alphabet from the latter about 
1000 B.C. In very early times a number of systems of writing: already 




reigned in different countries forming a compact and not very large 
area — perhaps from South Arabia to Asia Minor, and from Persia 
to Crete and Egypt. Whether they all sprang from one common 
stock of picture-writing we shall perhaps never know, nor can we as 
yet trace the influence which one great system may have had on 
another, owing to the poverty of documents from most of the 
countries concerned. 

It is certain that in Egypt from the IVth Dynasty onwards the 
mode of writing was essentially the same as that which was ex- 
tinguished by the fall of paganism in the 4th century a.d. Its 
elements in the hieroglyphic form are pictorial, but each hieroglyph 
had one or more well-defined functions, fixed by convention in such 
a manner that the Egyptian language was expressed in writing word 
by word. Although a picture sign may at times have embarrassed 
the skilled native reader by offering a choice of fixed values or 
functions, it was never intended to convey merely an idea, so as to 
leave to him the task of putting the idea into his own words. How 
far this holds good for the period before the IVth Dynasty it is 
difficult to say. The known inscriptions of the earlier times are so 
brief and so limited in range that the system on which they were 
written cannot yet be fully investigated. As far back as the 1st 
Dynasty, phonograms (see below) were in full use. But the spelling 
then was very concise : it is possible that some of the slighter words, 
such as prepositions, were omitted in the writing, and were intended 
to be supplied from the context. As a whole, we gain the impression 
that a really distinct and more primitive stage of hieroglyphic 
writing by a substantially vaguer notation of words lay not far 
behind the time of the 1st Dynasty. 

The employment of the signs are of three kinds: any given sign 
represents either (1) a whole word or root ; or (2) a sound as part of a 
word ; or (3) pictorially defines the meaning of a word the sound of 
which has already been given by a sign or group of signs preceding. 
The number of phonograms is very restricted, but some signs have all 
these powers. For instance, i"*""" 1 ! is the conventional picture of 
a draughtboard (shown in plan) with the draughtsmen (shown in 
elevation) on its edge: — this sign (1) signifies the root mn, " set," 


"firm"; or (2) in the group ^ , represents the same sound as 

part of the root mn]}, " good " ; or (3) added to the group snt (thus : 

«w>m C3) P shows that the meaning intended is " draught- 

board," or " draughts," and not any of the other meanings of snt. 
Thus signs, according to their employment, are said to be (1) " word- 
signs," (2) " phonograms," or (3) " determinatives." 

Word-signs. — The word-sign value of a sign is, in the first place, 
the name of the object it represents, or of some material, or quality, 

or action, or idea suggested by it. Thus ^ is hr, " face " ; u , a vase 

of ointment, is mrh-t, " ointment " ; < ■> is wdb, , " turn," Much 

investigation is still required to establish the origins of the values 
of the signs; in some cases the connexion between the pictures and 
the primary values seems to be curiously remote. Probably all the 
signs in the hieroglyphic signary can be employed in their primary 
sense. The secondary value expresses the consonantal root of the 
name or other primary value, and any, or almost any, derivative 
from that root: as when 1 ft 1, a mat with a cake upon it, is not 
only htp, an " offering-mat," but also htp in the sense of " concilia- 
tion," " peace," " rest," " setting " (of the sun), with many de- 
rivatives. In the third place, some signs may be transferred to 
express another root having the same consonants as the first: thus 
£) , the ear, by a play upon words can express not only sdm, " hear," 
but also s"dm, " paint the eyes." 

Phonograms. — Only a limited number of signs are found with this 
use, but they are of the greatest importance. By searching through- 
out the whole mass of normal inscriptions, earlier than the periods 
of Greek and Roman rule when great liberties were taken with the 
writing, probably no more than one hundred different phonograms 
can be found. The number of those commonly employed in good 
writing is between seventy and eighty. The most important phono- 
grams are the uniliteral or alphabetic signs, twenty-four in number 
in the Old Kingdom and without any homophones : later these were 
increased by homophones to thirty. Of biliteral phonograms — each 
expressing a combination of two consonants — there were about fifty 
commonly used: some fifteen or twenty were rarely used. As 
Egyptian roots seldom exceeded three letters, there was no need for 
triliteral phonograms to spell them. There is, however, one triliteral 

phonogram, the eagle, jj^> tyw, or tiu (?), used for the plural ending 

of adjectives in y formed from words ending in t (whether radical 
or the feminine ending). 

The phonetic values of the signs are derived from their word-sign 
values and consist usually of the bare root, though there are rare 
examples of the retention of a flexional ending ; they often ignore also 
the weaker consonants of the root, and on the same principle reduce a 
repeated consonant to a single one, as when the hoe [\ , hnn, has the 
phonetic value hn. The history of some of the alphabetic signs is still 
very obscure, but a sufficient number of them have been explained 

to make it nearly certain that the values of all were obtained on the 
same principles. 1 Some of the ancient words from which the phonetic 
values were derived probably fell very early into disuse, and may 
never be discoverable in the texts that have come down to us. The 
following are among those most easily explained : — 

(I, reed flower, value y and k ; from (J \\ vYy, y, " reed." 

(It seems as if the two values y and n were obtained by choosing 
first one and then the other of the two semi-consonants composing 
the name. They are much confused, and a conventional symbol / 

has to be adopted for rendering (J.) 
forearm, value "(S) 


>, mouth, 

value r; from 


,'00, " hand." 
, r, " mouth." 

, belly and teats, value &; from ^ ., h.t, "belly.' 

(The feminine ending is here, as usual, neglected.) 

tank, valued; from "— T -1 , J, " tank." 

slope of earth value q; ,, 

or brickwork, d 

(The doubled weak consonant is here neglected.) 

„ 2", "slope," 
*> " height." 



value d; from 
value z; from 


d.t, " hand." 

z.t, " cobra." 

For some, alphabetic signs more than one likely origin might be 
found, while for others, again, no clear evidence of origin is yet 

It has already been explained that the writing expresses only 
consonants. In the Graeco-Roman period various imperfect 
attempts were made to render the vowels in foreign names and 

words by the semi - vowels as also by j, the consonant V 

which - n originally represented having been reduced in speech 
by that time to the power of x, only. Thus, TlroKencuos is spelt 
Ptwrmys, Antoninus, 'Nt'nynws or Intnyns, &c. &c. Much earlier, 
throughout the New Kingdom, a special " syllabic " orthography, 
in which the alphabetic signs for the consonants are generally 
replaced by groups or single signs having the value of a consonant 
followed by a semi-vowel, was used for foreign names and words, e.g. 

ma-io, " chariot," was written 


in Coptic JiepetfouoYT. 


tower, was written 


-^ ffl Ik^ * = T®' Coptic Ate<TTO?\. 

•ms, " harp," was written ■ 

I I I 

[I A/VWVA (I ^\ 

non, " Hamath," was written 

According to W. Max Muller (Asien und Europa, 1893, chap, v.), 
this represents an endeavour to express the vocalization; but, if so, 
it was carried out with very little system. In practice, the semi- 
vowels are generally negligible. This method of writing can be 
traced back into the Middle Kingdom, if not beyond, and it greatly 
affected the spelling of native words in New Egyptian and demotic. 
Determinatives. — Most signs can on occasion be used as deter- 
minatives, but those that are very commonly employed as phono- 
grams_ or as secondary word-signs are seldom employed as deter- 
minatives; and when they are so used they are often somewhat 
differentiated. Certain generic determinatives are very common, 
e.g. :— 

J\ ; of motion. 

; of acts involving force. 
; of divinity. 

1 It seems that " acrophony " (giving to a sign the value of the 
first letter of its name) was indulged in only by priests of the latest 
age, inventing fantastic modes of writing their " vain repetitions" 
on the temple walls. 


i ; of a person or a man's name. 

] ; of buildings. 

of inhabited places. 
fvw> : of foreign countries. 

] ; club ; of foreigners. 

$\ ; of all actions of the mouth — eating and speaking, likewise 
S>{] silence and hunger. 


www ; ripple-lines ; of liquid. 




i-^ ; hide ; of animals, also leather, &c. 

vjj ; of plants and fibres. 
9 ; of flesh. 

a sealed papyrus-roll ; of books, teaching, law, and of 
abstract ideas generally. 
In the earliest inscriptions the use of determinatives is restricted 

to the ' 

V, &c, after proper names, but it developed im- 

mensely later, so that few words beyond the particles were written 
without them in the normal style after the Old Kingdom. 

Some few signs ideographic of a group of ideas are made to express 
particular words belonging to that group by the aid of phonograms 
which point out the special meaning. In such cases the ideogram 
is not merely a determinative nor yet quite a word - sign. 


"Libyan," &c, but | cannot stand by itself for the name of any 
particular foreign people. So also in monogram C3Z1 is sm "go," 
]\ is " conduct." 

Orthography. — The most primitive form of spelling in the hiero- 
glyphic system would be by one sign for each word, and the monu- 
ments of the 1st Dynasty show a decided tendency to this mode. 
Examples of it in later times are preserved in the royal cartouches, 
for here the monumental style demanded special consciseness. Thus, 
for instance, the name of Tethmosis III. — M'N-IJPR-R> — is spelled 

I 6 D M } (as R' is the name of the sun-god, with customary 

deference to the deity it is written first though pronounced last). 
A number of common words — prepositions, &c. — with only one 
consonant are spelled by single alphabetic signs in ordinary 
writing. Word-signs used singly for the names of objects are 

generally marked with I in classical writing, as — ", 

lb, "heart," 


, hr, " face," &c. 

But the use of bare word-signs is not common. Flexional con- 
sonants are almost always marked by phonograms, except in very 

early times; as when the feminine word ^^ =z./, "cobra," is 

spelled ^°Y Also, if a sign had more than one value, a phono- 
gram would be added to indicate which of its values was intended : 
thus I in 1 V\ is sw, "he," but in =f it is sin, "king." Further, 

owing to the vast number of signs employed, to prevent confusion 
of one with another in rapid writing they were generally provided 
with " phonetic complements," a group being less easily misread 

than a single letter. E.g. V, viz, " command," is regularly written 

i YV ws (10) ; but I, hz, " white," is written Y |, hz(z). This 

practice had the advantage also of distinguishing determinatives 
from phonograms. Thus the root or syllable hn is regularly written 

to avoid confusion with the determinative 'Uj. Redundance: 
in writing is the rule ; for instance, b is often spelled ]! <^^ ^\ 


(b)b> (>). Biliteral phonograms are very rare as phonetic complements, 
nor are two biliteral phonograms employed together in writing the 
radicals of a word. 

Spelling of words purely in phonetic or even alphabetic characters 
is not uncommon, the determinative being generally added. Thus 

in the pyramidal texts we find hpr, "become," written Vf in one 

copy of a text, in another ^ u . Such variant spellings are very 

important for fixing the readings of word-signs. It is noteworthy 
that though words were so freely spelled in alphabetic characters, 
especially in the time of the Old Kingdom, no advance was ever 
made towards excluding the cumbersome word-signs and biliteral 
phonograms, which, by a judicious use of determinatives, might well 
have been rendered quite superfluous. 

Abbreviations. — We find -¥— A II, strictly <nh z» £ standing for the 

ceremonial viva! ^nji viz, snb. " Life, Prosperity and Health," 

and in course of time w j was used in accounts instead of <f$\ 

dmz, " total." 

Monograms are frequent and are found from the earliest times. 

Thus ' /( ', ~T5~ mentioned above are monograms, the association 


monogram is 

and J\ having no pictorial meaning. Another common 


for H-t-Hrw " Hathor.' 

A word-sign may be compounded with its phonetic complement, 
as'HK hz " white," or with its determinative, as fiyT] hz "silver." 

The table on the opposite page shows the uses of a few of the 
commoner signs. 

The decorative value of hieroglyphic was fully appreciated in 
Egypt. The aim of the artist-scribe was to arrange his variously 
shaped characters into square groups, and this could be done in great 
measure by taking advantage of the different ways in which many 

words could be spelt. Thus hs could be written ^ , hsy 



But some words in the classical writing 


were intractable from this point of view. It is obvious that the alpha- 
betic signs played a very important part in the formation of the 
groups, and many words could only be written in alphabetic signs. 
A great advance was therefore made when several homophones were 
introduced into the alphabet in the Middle and New Kingdoms, 
partly as the result of the wearing away of old phonetic distinctions, 

giving the choice between — h— and I, c» ■ > and A 

■' , *~ww and V> \N and (§.. In later times the number of 

homophones in use increased greatly throughout the different 
classes, the tendency being much helped by the habit of fanciful 
writing; but few of these homophones found their way into the 
cursive script. Occasionally a scribe of the old times indulged 
his fancy in ■" sportive " or " mysterious " writing, either inventing 
new signs or employing old ones in unusual meanings. Short 
sportive inscriptions . are found in tombs of the Xllth Dynasty; 
some groups are so written cursively in early medical papyri, 
and certain' religious inscriptions in the royal tombs of the 
XlXth and XXth Dynasties are in secret writing. Fanciful 
writing abounds on the temples of the Ptolemaic and Roman 


Hieroglyphic. — The main division is into monumental or epigraphic 
hieroglyphs and written hieroglyphs. The former may be rendered 
by the sculptor or the painter in stone, on wood, &c, with great 
delicacy of detail, or may be simply sunk or painted in outline. 
When finely rendered they are of great value to the student in- 
vestigating the origins of their values. No other system of writing 
hears upon its face so clearly the history of its development as the 
Egyptian; yet even in this a vast amount of work is still required 
to detect, an d disentangle the details. Monumental hieroglyphic 
did not cease till the 3rd century a.d. (Temple of Esna). The written 
hieroglyphs, formed by the scribe with the reed pen on papyrus, 
leather, wooden tablets, &c, have their outlines more or less abbrevi- 
ated, producing eventually the cursive scripts hieratic and demotic. 
The written hieroglyphs were employed at all periods, especially 
for religious texts. 

Hieratic. — A kind of cursive hieroglyphic or hieratic writing is 
found even in the 1st Dynasty. In the Middle Kingdom it is well 

6 4 










hrd (khrod) 




hr (hor) 





Ir.t (yori.t) 



see, &c. 



r (ro) 





arm with 

njjt " be strong " 


[action of hand 

or arm] 
violent action 


man with 

njjt " be strong " 


violent action 


lungs and 








heart and 











evil, worthless- 
ness, smallness 







cut branch 

(i) ibh " tooth " 
(2) hw " taste " 





bite, &c. 
wood, tree 






fiat land 



(2) hrw " day " 







(1) sun 

ta) division of 

(boundless hori- 
zon, eternity 


cord on 























sms " follow " 






cut, prick, cut- 
ting instrument 


Rosetta stone itself. One of the most char- 
acteristic distinctions of later demotic is the 
minuteness of the writing. 

Hieroglyphic is normally written from right 
to left, the signs facing to the commencement 
of the line; hieratic and demotic follow the 
same direction. But monumental hieroglyphic 
may also be written from left to right, and is 
constantly so arranged for purposes of sym- 
metry, e.g. the inscriptions on the two jambs 
of a door are frequently turned in opposite 
directions; the same is frequently done with 
the short inscriptions scattered over a scene 
amongst the figures, in order to distinguish one 
label from another. 

In modern founts of type, the hieroglyphic 
signs are made to run from left to right, in 
order to facilitate the setting where European 
text is mixed with the Egyptian. The table 
on next page shows them in their more cor- 
rect position, in order to display more clearly 
their relation to the hieratic and demotic 

Clement of Alexandria states that in the 
Egyptian schools the pupils were first taught 
the " epistolographic " style of writing (i.e. 
demotic), secondly the " hieratic " employed 
by the sacred scribes, and finally the " hiero- 
glyphic " (Strom, v. 657). It is doubtful 
whether they classified the signs of the huge 
hieroglyphic syllabary with any strictness. 
The only native work on the writing that has 
come to light as yet is a fragmentary papyrus 
of Roman date which has a table in parallel 
columns of hieroglyphic signs, with their hieratic 
equivalents and words written in hieratic de- 
scribing them or giving their values or mean- 
ings. The list appears to have comprised about 
460 signs, including most of those that occur 
commonly in hieratic. They are to some 

extent classified. The bee f l// heads the list 

as a royal sign, and is followed by figures of 
nobles and other human figures in various atti- 
tudes, more or less grouped among themselves, 
animals, reptiles and fishes, scorpion, animals 
again, twenty-four alphabetic characters, parts 
of the human body carefully arranged from 

@ to J\, thirty-two in number, parts of 

animals, celestial signs, terrestrial signs, vases. 
The arrangement down to this point is far from 
strict, and beyond it is almost impossible to 
describe concisely, though there is still a rough 
grouping of characters according to resem- 
blance of form, nature or meaning. It is a 
curious fact that not a single bird is visible 
on the fragments, and the trees and plants, 
which might easily have been collected in a 
compact and well-defined section, are widely 
scattered. Why the alphabetic characters are 
introduced where they are is a puzzle ; the order 

of these is:- <=» J U ^ (?) f] (?) 

f (?) -*-i (?) -J- m 'l (?) 


characterized, and in its most cursive form seems hardly to retain 
any definable trace of the original hieroglyphic pictures. The style 
varies much at different periods. 

Demotic. — Widely varying degrees of cursiveness are at all periods 
observable in hieratic; but, about the XXVIth Dynasty, which 
inaugurated a great commercial era, there was something like a 
definite parting between the uncial hieratic and the most cursive 
form afterwards known as demotic. The employment of hieratic 
was thenceforth almost confined to the copying of religious and other 
traditional texts on papyrus, while demotic was used not only for all 
business but also for writing literary and even religious texts in the 
popular language. By the time of the XXVth Dynasty the cursive 
of the conservative Thebais had become very obscure. A better 
form from Lower Egypt drove this out completely in the time of 
Amasis II. and is the true demotic. Before the Macedonian con- 
quest thecursiveligaturesof theolddemoticgave birth to new symbols 
which were carefully and distinctly formed, and a little later an 
epigraphic variety was engraved on stone, as in the case of the 

Three others, <S^ ^"°^ 






had already occurred 

amongst the fish and reptiles. There seems to be no logical aim 
in this arrangement of the alphabetic characters and the series is 
incomplete. Very probably the Egyptians never constructed a 
really systematic list of hieroglyphs. In modern lists the signs are 
classified according to the nature of the objects they depict, as 
human figures, plants, vessels, instruments, &c. Horapollon's 
Hieroglyphica may be cited as a native work, but its author, 
if really an Egyptian, had no knowledge of good writing. His pro- 
duction consists of two elaborate complementary lists: the one 
describing sign-pictures and giving their meanings, the other cata- 
loguing ideas in order to show how they could be expressed in 
hieroglyphic. Each seems to us to be made up of curious but per- 
verted reminiscences eked out by invention ; but they might some day 
prove to represent more truly the usages of mystics and magicians 
in designing amulets, &c, at a time approaching the middle ages. 







Plate I, 






1 1 (1 in.'iiji <'.«< 

L.;,i.uv v "WW"***" 

II » 







Plate II. 








ent, "who" . . 

Perso ("Pharaoh") 

ybt, " father " 

iSnkh, "live" 

* ekh, " know " . 
ahe, " stand " 
eine, " carry " 
ms (phon.) . 
i (alph.) . 
i (alph.) ... 
m (alph.) 
n (alph.) 










Per*o mh wz, §nb 



Mastaba of Ptahhetep and 
Akhethetep, pt. i. (1900); 
M. A. Murray, Saqqara 
Mastabas (London, 1905); 
also Petrie and Griffith, 
Two Hieroglyphic Papyri from 
Tanis (London, 1889) (native 
sign-list) ; G. Moller, Hiera- 
tische Paltiographie (Leipzig, 
1909) ; Griffith, Catalogue of 
Demotic Papyri in the J. 
Rylands Collection (Man- 
chester, 1909). (F. Ll. G.) 

E. Art and Archaeology. 
— In the following sections 
a general history of the 
characteristics of Ancient 
Egyptian art is first given, 
showing the variation of 
periods and essentials of 
style; and this is followed 
by an account of the use 
made of material products, 
of the tools and instru- 
ments employed, and of the 
monuments. For further 
details see also the separate 
topographical headings (for 
excavations, &c), and the 
general articles on the 
various arts and art- 
materials (for references to 
Egypt); also Pyramids; 
Mummy, &c. 

The early scribe's outfit, often carried slung over his shoulder, 

is seen in the hieroglyph 

It consisted of frayed reed pens 

or brushes, a small pot of water, and a palette with two circular cavi- 
ties in which black and red ink were placed, made of finely powdered 
colour solidified with gum. In business and literary documents 
red ink was used for contrast, especially in headings; in demotic, 
however, it is very rarely seen. The pen became finer in course of 
time, enabling the scribe to write very small. The split reed of the 
Greek penman was occasionally adopted by the late demotic scribes. 
Egypt had long been bilingual when, in papyri of the 2nd century 
A.D., we begin to find transcripts of the Egyptian language into 
Greek letters, the latter reinforced by a few signs borrowed from 
the demotic alphabet: so written we have a magical text and a 
horoscope, probably made by foreigners or for their use. The 
infinite superiority of the Greek alphabet with its full notation of 
vowels was readily seen, but piety and custom as yet barred the way 
to its full adoption. The triumph of Christianity banished the old 
system once and for all ; even at the beginning of the 4th century 
the native Egyptian script scarcely survived north of the Nubian 
frontier at Philae; a little later it finally expired. The following 
eight signs, however, had been taken over from demotic by the Copts : 

H) =$, from JjLJ *;, dem. ^ ^. 

& =h, probably from w ^(or^jj* ftp, dem. O. 

Ij (Boh.) = {t, from T h\\, dem. *y. 

Z (Akhm.)=6,from®' ® hy, hi, dem. T 
CJ =/, from 2 C=*_ /, dem. _Jf . 
6 = l, from ^T* k (or @ §), dem. «— , S- 
X =1, from A d; (or ^^J «).dem. | \^.. 

i" -«, 


dy-t, dem. - / . 

For origins of hieroglyphs, see Petrie's Medum (1892); F. Ll. 
Griffith, A Collection of Hieroglyphs (1898); N. de G. Davies, The 

IX. 3 

General Characteristics. 

The wide and complex subject of Egyptian art will be treated 
here in six periods: Prehistoric, Early Kings, Pyramid Kings, 
Xllth Dynasty, XVIIIth-XXth Dynasties, XXVIth Dynasty 
and later. In each age will be considered the (A) statuary, 
(B) reliefs, (C) painting. 

Prehistoric. — The earliest civilized population of Egypt was 
highly skilled in mechanical accuracy and regularity, but had 
little sense of organic forms. They kept the unfinished treatment 
of the limbs and extremities which is so characteristic of most 
barbaric art ; and the action was more considered than the form. 

(A) In the round there are in the earlier graves female figures 
of two races, the Bushman type and European, both probably 
representing servants or slaves. These have the legs always 
united, sloping to a point without feet (Plate I. fig. 1) ; the arms 
are qnly stumps. The face has a beaky nose and some indication 
of eyes. Upon the surface is colouring; red for the Bushman, 
with black whisker though female; white for the European 
type, with black tattoo patterns. Other female figures are 
modelled in a paste, upon a stick, and the black hair is sometimes 
made separately to fit on as a wig over the red head, showing 
that wigs were then used. Male figures are generally only heads 
in the earlier times. Tusks with carved heads (Plate I. figs. 2, 3) 
are the earliest, beginning at S.D. (sequence date) 33; ' heads 
on the top of combs are found, from S.D. 42 to the close of such 
combs in the fifties. All of these heads show a high forehead 
and a pointed beard; and such expression as may be discovered 
is grave but not savage. In later times whole figures of ivory, 
stone and clay are found, with the legs united, and the arms 
usually joined to the body. A favourite way of indicating the 
eyes was by drilling two holes and inserting a white shell bead 
in each. The figures of animals (Plate I. figs. 4, 5) are quite as 
rude as the human figures: they only summarily indicate the 

1 In the prehistoric age when absolute dating is out of reach a 
" sequence dating " by means of the sequence of types in pottery, , 
tools, &c, has been proposed in Petrie's Diospolis Parva, pp. 4 et 
sqq. The earliest prehistoric graves yet known are placed at S.D. 
30, and shortly before S.D. 80 the period of the first historic dynasty 
is entered. 





mature, and often hardly express the genus. They are most usual 
on combs and pins; but sacred animals are also found. The 
lion is the most usual (Plate I. fig. 7), but the legs are roughly 
marked, if at all: the leonine air is given, but the attitude is 
more distinct than the form. The hawk (Plate I. fig. 6) is 
modelled in block without any legs. The slate palettes in the 
form of animals are even more summary, and continually 
degraded until they lost all trace of their origin. There are also 
curious figures of animals chipped in flint, which show some^ 
character, but no detail. 

(B) Reliefs with animal figures belong to the later part of tl>e/ 
prehistoric age. The relief is low, and the form hatched acr.oss 
with lines (Plate I. fig. 8), a style copied from drawing. There 
is more animation than in the round figures. At the close of 
this age the fashion of long processions of animals appears 
(Plate I. fig. 9) ; some character is shown in these, but no sense 
of action. 

(C) Drawing is found from the earliest civilization, done in 
white slip on red vases. Figures of men are very rare (Plate I. 
fig. 10); they have the body triangular, the waist being very 
narrow; the legs are two lines linked by a zigzag, as if to express 
that they move to and fro. The usual figures are goats and 
hippopotami; always having the body covered with cross lines 
to express the connexion of the outlines (Plate I. fig. n). This 
technique is in every way closely akin to that of the modern 
Kabyle. An entirely different mode is common at a later time 
when designs were painted in thin red colour on a light brown 
ware. The subjects of the earlier of these examples are imitations 
of cordage, of marbling, and of basket-work; later there are 
rows of men and animals, and ships (Plate I. figs. 12, 13), with 
various minor signs. The figures are never cross-hatched as in 
earlier drawing, but always filled in altogether. The fact that 
the ships have oars and not sails makes it probable that they 
were rather for the sea than for Nile traffic, and a starfish 
among the motives on such pottery also points to the sea con- 
nexion. The ulterior meaning of the decoration is probably 
religious and funereal, but the objects which are figured must 
have been familiar. 

For this whole period see Jean Capart, Debuts dg I' art en ligypte 
(1904; trans. Primitive Art in Ancient Egypt). 

The Early Kings. — The dynastic race wrought an entire 
transformation in the art of Egypt; in place of the clumsy 
and undetailed representations, there suddenly appears • highly 
artistic work, full of character, action and anatomical detail. 

(A) The earliest statues of this age are the colossi of the god 
Min from Coptos; that they belong to the artistic race is evident 
from the spirited reliefs upon them (see below, B), but the 
figures were very rude, the legs and arms being joined all in the 
mass. The main example of this early art is a limestone head of 
a king (Plate I. figs. 15, 16), which is a direct study from life, 
to serve as a model. For the accuracy of the facial curves, and 
the grasp of character and type, it is equal to any later work; 
and in its entire absence of conventions and its pure naturalism 
there is no later sculpture so good: as Prof. A. Michaelis says, 
" it renders the race type with astounding keenness, and shows 
an excellent power of observation in the exact representation 
of the eyes." By the portrait, it is probably of King Narmer or 
some king related to him, that is, about the beginning of the 
1st Dynasty. The ivory statuette of an aged king (Plate I. 
fig. 14) is probably slightly later. It shows the same subtle 
sense of character, and is unsurpassed in its reality. Many ivory 
figures of men, women and animals are known from Nekhen 
(Hieraconpolis) and Abydos; and they all show the same school 
of work, simple, dignified, observant, and with an air which 
places them on a higher plane of truthfulness .and precision than 
later art. There is none of the mannerism of a long tradition, 
but a nobility pervades them which has no self-consciousness. 
The lower class of work of this age is shown by great numbers 
. of glazed pottery figures both human and animal. Later in the 
Ilnd Dynasty, the head of Khasekhem (Plate I. fig.' 17) shows 
the beginning of convention, but yet has a delicacy about the 
mouth which surpasses later works. 

(B) Reliefs abound at this age, and include the most important 
evidences of the development of the art. The earliest examples 
are those of animals (Plate II. fig. 18) and shells on the colossi 
of Coptos. They show a keen sense of form, and the stag's head, 
which is probably the earliest, already bears an artistic feeling 
wholly different to that of any of the prehistoric works (P.K. iii. 
ivl). , The Carvings on. Slate palettes appear to begin with work 
crudely accurate and forceful, the heavy limbs being ridged with 
tendons and muscles (Plate II. fig. 19), but there is more pro- 
portion, with the same massive strength (Plate II. fig. 20). 
Soon after, with a leap, the artist produced the first pure work 
of art that is known (Plate II. fig. 21), a design for its own sake 
without the tie of "symbolism or history. The group of two long- 
necked gazelles facing a palm tree is of extraordinary refinement, 
and shows the, artistic consciousness in every part; the sym- 
metric rendering of the palm tree, reduced to fit the scale of the 
animals, the dainty grace of the smooth gazelles contrasted with 
the rugged stem, the delicacy of the long flowing curves and the 
fine indications of the joints, all show a sense of design which 
has rarely been equalled in the ceaseless repetitions of the tree 
and supporters motive during every age since. Passing the 
various palettes with hunting scenes and animals (Plate II. 
fig. 22), we come to the great historical carving of King Narmer 
(Plate II. fig. 23). Here the anatomy has reached its limits for 
such work; the precision of the muscles on the inner and outer 
sides of the leg, of the uniform grip in the left arm, and the tense 
muscle upholding the right arm, prove that the artist knew that 
part of his work perfectly. The large ceremonial mace-heads 
recording the Sed festivals of the king Narmer and another, 
belong also to this school; but owing to their smaller size they 
have not such artistic detail. With them were found many 
reliefs in ivory, on tusks, wands and cylinders. The main motive 
in these is a long procession of animals (Plate II. figs. 24, 25) 
often grotesquely crowded; but there is much observation 
shown and the figures are expressive. No drawing of this age 
has survived. 

The Pyramid Kings. — A different ideal appears in the pyramid 
times; in place of the naturalism of the earlier work there is 
more regularity, some convention, and the sense of a school in 
the style. The prevailing feeling is a noble spaciousness both in 
scale and in form, an equanimity based upon knowledge and 
character, a grandeur of conception expressed by severely simple 
execution. There is nothing superfluous, nothing common, 
nothing trivial. The smallest as well as the largest work seems 
complete, inevitable, immutable, without limitations of time, 
or labour or thought. 

(A) The statuette of Khufu or Cheops (Plate III. fig. 29) 
though only a minute figure in ivory, shows the character of 
immense energy and will; the face is an astonishing portrait to 
be expressed in a quarter of an inch. The life-size statue of 
Khafre or Chephren (Plate III. fig. 30) is a majestic work, 
serene and powerful; carved in hard diorite, yet unhesitating in 
execution. The muscular detail is full, but yet kept in harmony 
with the massive style of the figure. The private persons have 
entirely different treatment according to the character of their 
position. In place of the awful dignity of the kings there is the 
placid high-bred Princess Nofri (Plate II. fig. 27, Plate III. fig. 
31), the calm conscientious dignitary Hemset (Plate III. fig. 32), 
the bustling, active, middle-class official, Ka-aper (Plate II. fig. 28, 
Plate III. fig. 33), and the kneeling figure of a servitor. The 
differences of character are very skilfully rendered in all the 
sculpture of this age. The whole figures are stiff in the earlier 
time, as the figure of Nes; then square and massive, but true in 
form, as Rahotp and Nofri (Plate II. fig. 27); and afterwards 
easier and less monumental, as Ka-aper (Plate II. fig. 28). The 
skill in beaten copper work is shown by the portrait of the Prince 
Mer-en-ra (Plate III. fig. 35). 

(B) The reliefs are quite equal to the statuary. The wooden 
panels of Hesi (Plate II. fig. 26) show the archaic style of great 
detail, with a bold, stark vigour of attitude. Later work is 
abundant in the tomb-sculptures of this age, with a fulness of 
variety and detail which makes them the most interesting of all 



Plate III. 


! ■,.!0jh.^ 



feiiL v' '; 



Plwto, I 









IX. 66. 

Plate IV. 


1400 B. C. TO ROMAN. 


47. KHA-EM-HAT. 


\ •■;• \ 


'-Pi?/ y'M A. 1W 









branches of the art. The general effect cannot be judged without 
a large scene, but the figures of two men and an ox (Plate III. fig. 
37) show the freshness and vigour of the style, which is even 
higher than this in some examples. The clear, noble spacing of 
the surface work is well shown by a group of offerings and 
inscribed titles (Plate III. fig. 36). 

(C) Flat drawings of this age are rare. Some fine examples, 
such as the geese from Medum, show that such work kept pace 
with the reliefs; but most of the fresco-work has perished, and 
there are few instances of line drawing. 

The Xllth Dynasty. — This age overlaps the previous in its 
style. The end of the last age was in the very degraded tomb 
work of the early Xlth Dynasty. 

(A) The new style begins with the royal statues, which it seems 
we must attribute to the foreign kings from whom the Xllth 
Dynasty was descended. These statues were later appropriated by 
the Hyksos, and so came to be called by their name, which is a mis- 
nomer. The type of face (Plate III. fig. 38) is thick-featured, full 
of force, with powerful masses of facial muscle covering the skull. 
The style is very vigorous and impassioned, without any trace of 
relenting towards conventional work. The surfaces are not in the 
least subdued by a general breadth of style, as in the last period; 
but, on the contrary, revel in the full detail of variety. There is 
perhaps no age where nature is so little controlled by convention 
in either the living character or its sculptured expression. One of 
these kings might well be the founder of the IXth Dynasty, 
" Achthoes (Kheti), who did much injury to all the inhabitants," 
" Khuther Taurus the tyrant "; the expression is that of a 
Chlodwig or an Alboin. From this type evidently descended 
the milder and more civilized kings of the Xllth Dynasty, the 
resemblance being so strong that the fierce figures have even been 
identified with that dynasty by some. A good example is that of 
the statue of Amenemhat (Amenemhe) III. (Plate III. fig. 39). 
The style of the Xllth Dynasty may be summed up as clean, 
highly-finished work, strong in facial detail; but with neither the 
grandeur of the IVth nor the vivacity of the XVIIIth Dynasty. 
This passed in the XHIth Dynasty into a graceful but weak 
manner, as in the statues of Sebkhotp (Sebek-hotep) III. and 

(B) The relief work shows most clearly the rise of the new 
style. In the middle of the Xlth Dynasty an entirely fresh 
treatment appears; the Old Kingdom work had died out in very 
bad sunk-reliefs, the fresh style (Plate III. fig. 41) was a low 
relief with sharp edges above the field. It was full of delicate 
variety in the surfaces, and of elaborated close-packed lines of hair 
and ornaments. By the time of the early Xllth Dynasty, this 
reached a perfection of refinement in the detail of facial curves, 
with an ostentatiously low relief (P.K. ix. i.), rather on the lines 
of modern French work; but the whole with clean, firm outlines, 
severely restrained in the expression, and without any trace of 
emotion. It is the work of a school, in which high training took 
the place of the reliance on nature. Sunk relief was also well used, 
as by Senusert (Senwosri) I. (Plate III. fig. 40). There was a 
steady decline during the Xllth Dynasty and onward, but the 
same tone was followed. 

(C) In some tombs painting only was used, and it followed the 
general character of the relief treatment, being more rigid, de- 
tailed, and scholastic than the older style. 

The XVIIIth-XXth Dynasties. — The obvious, not to say 
superficial, character of this age has rendered it one of the most 
popular in Egyptian art. The older breadth, fulness, and vigour 
have vanished, those great qualities which stamp the immortal 
works of early times. The difference is much like that between 
the Parthenon and the Niobids, or between Jacopo Avanzi and 
Caracci. In this change is the whole difference between the art of 
character and the art of emotion; and though the emotional side 
is the more popular, as needing less thought to understand it, yet 
the unfailing canon is that in every age and land the true quality 
of art is proportionate to the expression of character as apart 
from transient emotion. This may perhaps apply to other arts 
as well as to sculpture and painting. If we accept frankly the 
emotional nature of this age, we may admire its graceful outlines, 

its vivacious manner, its romantic style, with an occasional 
sauciness which is amusing and attractive. It revelled in rich 
detail, and close masses of lines, as in wigs and ribbed dresses. 
It sported with a seductive Syrian type of face, especially under 
Amenophis (Amenhotep) III.; but we find the anatomy giving 
way to mere smoothness of surface, for the sake of contrast with 
the masses of detail. The romantic element increased, solemn 
funereal statues show husband and wife hand in hand; and it 
culminated under Akhenaton, who is seen kissing his wife in the 
chariot, or dancing her on his knee. An overwhelming naturalism 
swamped the older reserves of Egyptian art, and the expression of 
the postures, actions and familiarities of daily life, or the instan- 
taneous attitudes of animals, became the dernier cri of fashion. 
It was all charming and wonderful, but it was the end, — nothing 
could come after it. The XlXth Dynasty, at its best under 
Seti I., could only excel in high finish of smoothness and graceful 
curves; life, character, meaning, had vanished. And soon after, 
under Rameses II., mere mechanical copying, hard lifeless 
routine of stone-cutting, regardless of truth and of nature, 
dominated the whole. 

(A) In sculpture there is a certain baldness of style at first, 
as in the Amenophis I. at Turin or Mutnefert at Cairo. More 
fulness and richness of character succeeded, as in Tahutmes 
(Tethmosis) III. and Amenophis III. (Plate IV. fig. 42, British 
Museum). And the feeling of the age finds greater scope in 
private statues, many of which have a personal fascination 
about them, as in the seated figures at Cairo and Florence, and 
the freer work in wood, of which the ebony negress (Plate IV. 
fig. 45) is the best example. The burst of naturalism under 
Akhenaton resulted in some marvellous portraiture, of which 
the fragment of a queen's head (Plate IV. fig. 43) is perhaps the 
most brilliant instance; the fidelity in the delicate curves of 
the nose and around the mouth is enhanced by the touch of 
artistic convention in the facing of the lips. The only work of 
ability in the XlXth Dynasty is the black granite figure 
(Plate IV. fig. 44) of Rameses II. at Turin. The ordinary 
statuary of his reign is painfully stiff and poor, and there is no 
later work in the period worth notice. 

(B) The reliefs of the early XVIIIth Dynasty are closely like 
the scenes of the tombs in the pyramid age, but soon carving 
was superseded by the cheaper painting, and but few tombs 
in relief are known. The temples were the principal places for 
reliefs; and they steadily deteriorate from the first great example, 
Deir el Bahri (see Architecture: Egyptian), down to the late 
Ramessides. The portraiture is strong and clear-cut (Plate IV. 
fig. 46), but somewhat mechanical and without muscular detail: 
the sameness is rather more than is probable. There is a good 
deal of repetition for mere effect, even in the fine work of Kha- 
em-hat (Plate IV. fig. 47), under Amenophis III. That the 
artists were conscious of their poverty of thought is shown by 
some precise imitations of the style of early monuments. On 
reaching the age of Akhenaton, the peculiar style of that school 
is obvious in every relief; the older conventions were deserted, 
and, for good or for bad, a new start from nature was attempted. 
After that the smooth finish of the Seti reliefs at Abydos (Plate 
IV. fig. 48) shows no life or observation; and only occasionally 
the artist triumphed over the stone-worker, as in the portrait 
of Bantanta at Memphis, which is precisely like another head 
of her found in Sinai. The innumerable reliefs of the XlXth- 
XXth Dynasty temples are only of historic interest, and are all 
despicable in comparison with earlier works. 

(C) Painting was the art most congenial to this age; the 
lightness of touch, abundance of incident, and even comedy, 
of the scenes are familiar in the frescoes in the British Museum. 
And under Akhenaton this was pervaded by an entire natural- 
ism of posture, as seen in the two little princesses (Plate IV. 
fig. 49). Drawing continued to be the strong point of the art 
after the more laborious sculpture had lost all vitality. The 
tomb of Seti shows exquisitely firm line drawing; and the heads 
of four races (Plate IV. fig. 50), Western, Syrian, and two Negro, 
here show the unfailing line- work which has never been matched 
in later times. The artist habitually drew the long lines of whole 




limbs without a single hesitation or revoke; and the drawing 
of a tumbling girl (Plate IV. rig. 51) shows how credibly such 
contortions could be represented. The comic papyri of the 
XXth Dynasty have also a very strong sense of character, even 
through coarse drawing and some childish combinations. 
• The subsequent centuries show continuous decline, and in 
whatever branch we compare the work, we see that each 
dynasty was poorer than that which preceded it. The XXVIth 
Dynasty is often looked on as a renaissance; but when we 
compare similar work we see that it was poorer than the 
XXIInd, as that was poorer than the XlXth. The alabaster 
statue of Amenardus of the XXVth is faulty in pose, and 
perfunctory in modelling; the resemblance between this 
and the head of her nephew Tirhaka is perhaps the best 
evidence of truthful work. After this there was a strong 
archaistic fashion, much like that under Hadrian; in both 
cases it may have arrested decay, but it did not lift the art up 
again. The work of this age can always be detected by the 
faulty jointing (Plate IV. fig. 52) and muscular treatment. 
The elements are right enough, but there was not the vital sense 
to combine them properly. Hence the monstrous protuberances 
(Plate IV. fig. 53) on relief figures of this age; a fault which the 
Greek fell into in his decline, as shown in the Farnese Hercules. 

Portraiture, with its limited demand on imagination and lack 
of ideals, w is the form of art which flourished latest. The 
Saitic heads in basalt show a school of close observation, with 
fair power of rendering the personal character; and even in 
Roman times there still were provincial artists who could 
model a face very truthfully, as is shown in one case in which 
the stucco head (Plate IV. fig. 54) from a coffin is here superposed 
on the view of the actual skull to show the accuracy of the work. 
The school of portrait-painting belongs entirely to Greek art, and 
is therefore not touched upon here. (See Edgar, Catalogue of 
Graeco- Egyptian Coffins, 48 plates, for this subject.) 

Lastly we must recognize the different schools of Egyptian 
sculpture which are as distinct as those of recent painting. 
The black-granite school in every age is the finest; its seat we 
do not know, but its vitality and finish always exceed those of 
contemporary works. The limestone school was probably the 
next best, to judge from the reliefs, but hardly any statues of 
this school have survived; it probably was seated at Memphis. 
The quartzite work from Jebel Ahmar near Cairo stands next, 
as often very fine design is found in this hard material. The 
red granite school of Assuan comes lower, the work being usually 
clumsy and with unfinished corners and details. And the lowest 
of all was the sandstone school of Silsila, which is always the 
worst. Broadly speaking, the Lower Egyptian was much better 
than the Upper Egyptian; a conclusion also evident in the art 
of the tombs done on the spot. But the secret of the black granite 
school, and its excellence, is the main problem unsolved in the 
history of the art. (W. M. F. P.) 

Tools and Material Products. 

Tools (see Illustrations 1 to in). — The history of tools is a 
very large subject which needs to be studied for all countries; 
the various details of form are too numerous to specify here, 
but the general outline of tools used in Egypt may be briefly 
stated under general and special types. The general include 
tools for striking, slicing and scraping; the special tools are for 
fighting, hunting, agriculture, building and thread-work. 

Striking Tools. — The wooden mallet of club form (1) was used 
in the Vlth and XHth Dynasties; of the modern mason's form 
(2) in the Xllth and XVIIIth. The stone mace head was a 
sharp-edged disk (3) , in the prehistoric from 3 1-40 sequence date ; 
of the pear shape (4) from S.D. 42, which was actually in use 
till the IVth Dynasty, and represented down to Roman time. 
The metal or stone hammer with a long handle was unknown 
till Greek or Roman times; but, for beating out metal, hemi- 
spherical stones (5) were held in the hand, and swung at arm's 
length overhead. Spherical hard stone hammers (6) were held 
in the hand for dressing down granite. The axe was at the close 
of the prehistoric age a square slab of copper (7) with one sharp 

edge; small projecting tails then appeared at each end of the 
back (8), and increased until the long tail for lashing onto the 
handle is more than half the length of the axe in an iron one of 
Roman (?) age (13). Flint axes were made in imitation of metal 
in the XHth Dynasty (9). Battle-axes with rounded outline 
started as merely a sharp edge of metal (10) inserted along a stick 
(10, n); they become semicircular (12) by the Vlth Dynasty, 
lengthen to double their width in the XHth, and then thin out 
to a waist in the middle by the XVIIIth Dynasty. Flint hoes 
(14) are common down to the XHth Dynasty. Small copper 
hoes (15) with a hollow socket are probably of about the XXIInd 
Dynasty. Long iron picks (16), like those of modern navvies, 
were made by Greeks in the XXVIth Dynasty. 

Slicing Tools.— -The knife was originally a flint saw (17), havinj 
minute teeth; it must have been used for cutting up animals, 
fresh or dried, as the teeth break away on soft wood. The double- 
edged straight flint knife dates from S.D. 32-45. The single- 
edged knife (18) is from 33-65. The flint knives of the time of 
Menes are finely curved (19), with a handle-notch; by the end 
of the Hnd Dynasty they were much coarser (20) and almost 
straight in the back. In the Xlth-XIIth Dynasty they were 
quite straight in the back (21), and without any handle-notch. 
The copper knives are all one-edged with straight back (22) 
down to the XVIIIth Dynasty, when two-edged symmetrical 
knives (23) become usual. Long thin one-edged knives of iron 
begin about 800 B.C. Various forms of one-edged iron knives, 
straight (24) and curved (25), belong to Roman times. A cutting- 
out knife, for slicing through textiles, began double-edged (26) in 
the 1st Dynasty, and went through many single-edged forms 
(27-29) until it died out in the XXth Dynasty (Man, 1901, 123). 
A small knife hinged on a pointed backing of copper (31) seems to 
have been made for hair curling and toilet purposes. Razors (30) 
are known of the XHth Dynasty, and became common in the 
XVIIIth. A curious blade of copper (32), straight sided, and 
sharpened at both ends, belongs to the close of the prehistoric 
age. Shears are only known of Roman age and appear to have 
been an Italian invention: there is a type in Egypt with one 
blade detachable, so that each can be sharpened apart. Chisels of 
bronze began of very small size (33) at S.D. 38, and reached a 
full size at the close of the prehistoric age. In historic times the 
chisels are about 1 X I, X 6 to 8 in. long (34) . Small chisels set in 
wooden handles are found (35) of the XHth and XVIIIth 
Dynasties. Ferrules first appear in the Assyrian iron of the 7th 
century B.C. The rise of stone work led to great importance of 
heavy chisels (36) for trimming limestone and Nubian sandstone; 
such chisels are usually round rods about f in. thick and 6 in. long. 
The cutting edge was about | in. wide for flaking tools (36), 
which were not kept sharp, and 1 in. wide for facing tools (37) 
which had a good edge. In Greek times the iron chisels are 
shorter and merge into wedges (39). The socketed or mortising 
chisel (38) is unknown till the Italian bronze of the 8th century 
B.C., and the Naucratis iron of the 6th century. Adzes begin in 
S.D. 56, as plain slips of copper (40) 4 to 6 in. long, about 1 wide 
and £th thick. The square end was rounded in the early dynastic 
times, and went through a series of changes down to the XlXth 
Dynasty. Adzes of iron are probably of Greek times. A fine 
instance of a handle about 4 ft. long is represented in the Illrd 
Dynasty (P.M. XL). The adze (41) was used not only for wood- 
work but also for dressing limestone. 

Scraping Tools. — Flint scrapers are found from S.D. 40 and 
onward. The rectangular scraper (42) began in S.D. 63, and 
continued into the Hnd Dynasty: the flake with rounded ends 
(43) was used from the 1st to the IVth Dynasty (P. Ab. i. xiv., 
xv.). Round scrapers were also made (44). Flint scrapers were 
used in dressing down limestone sculpture in the Illrd Dynasty. 
Rasps of conical form (45), made of a sheet of bronze punched 
and coiled round, were common in the XVIIIth Dynasty, 
apparently as personal objects, possibly used for rasping dried 
bread. In the Assyrian iron tools of the 7th century B.C. the long 
straight rasp (46) is exactly of the modern type. The saw is first 
found as a notched bronze knife of the Illrd Dynasty. Larger 
toothed saws (47) are often represented in thelVth-VIthDynasty, 




as used by carpenters. There are no dated specimens till the 
Assyrian iron saws (48) of the 7th century B.C. Drills were of 
flint (49) for hard material and bead-making, of bronze for wood- 
work. In the Assyrian tools iron drills are of slightly twisted 
scoop form (50), and of centre-bit type with two scraping edges 
(51). In Roman times the modern V drill (52) is usual. The 
drill was worked by a stock with a loose cap (53), rotated by a 
drill bow', in the Xllth to Roman dynasties. The pump drill 
with cords twisted round it was in Roman use. The bow drill 
(56) was used as a fire drill to rotate wood (55) on wood (57); 
and the cap (54) for such use was of hard stone with a highly 
polished hollow. The drill brace appears to have been used by 
Assyrians in the 7th century B.C. Piercers of bronze tapering 
(58), to enlarge holes in leather, &c, were common in all ages. 

Fighting Weapons. — The battle-axe has been described above 
with axes. The flint-dagger (59) is found from S.D. 40-56. A 
very finely made copper dagger (60) with deep midrib is dated to 
between 55 and 60 S.D. Copper daggers with parallel ribbing 
(61) down the middle are common in the Xlth-XIVth Dynasties; 
and in the XVIIIth-XXth Dynasties they are often shown in 
scenes and on figures. The falchion with a curved blade (62) 
belongs to the XVIIIth-XXth Dynasty. The rapier (63) or 
lengthened dagger is rarely found, and is probably of prehistoric 
Greek origin. The sword is of Greek and Roman age, always 
double-edged and of iron. The spear is not commonly found in 
Egypt, until the Greek age, but it is represented from the Xlth 
Dynasty onward ; it belonged to the Semitic people (L.D.ii. 133). 
The bow was always of wood, in one piece in the prehistoric and 
early times, also of two horns in the 1st Dynasty; but the 
compound bow of horn is rarely found, only as an importation, 
in the XVIIIth Dynasty. The arrow-heads of flint (64-66) and of 
bone (68-69) were pointed, and also square-ended (67) for 
hunting (P.R.T. ii. vi.; vii. A., 7 ; xxxiv.). The copper arrow- 
heads appear in the XlXth Dynasty, of blade form with tang 
(70); the triangular form (72), and leaf form with socket (71), are 
of the XXVIth Dynasty. Triangular iron arrows with tang are 
of the same age. Tangs show that the shaft was a reed, sockets 
show that it was of wood. Many early arrows (Xllth) have 
only hard wood points of conical form. The sling is rarely 
shown in the XlXth-XXth Dynasties; and the only known 
example is probably of the XXVIth. 

Hunting Weapons. — The forked lance of flint was at first wide 
with sfight hollow (73) from S.D. 32-43; then the hollow 
became a V notch (74) in 38 S.D. and onward. The lance was 
fixed in a wooden shaft for throwing, and held in by a check- 
cord from flying too far if it missed the animal (P.N. LXXIIL). 
The harpoon for fishing was at first of bone (7 5) , and was imitated 
in copper (76, 77) from S.D. 36 onwards. The boomerang or 
throw-stick (78) was used from the 1st to the XXIInd Dynasty, 
and probably later. Fish-hooks of copper (79-82) are found from 
the 1st Dynasty to Roman times. A trap for animals' legs, 
formed by splints of palm stick radiating round a central hole, is 
figured in S.D. 60, and one was found of probably the XXth 
Dynasty. Fishing nets were common in all historic times, and the 
lead sinkers (83) and stone sinkers (84) are often found under the 
XVIIIth-XXth Dynasties. 

Agricultural Tools. — The hoe of wood (85) is the main tool from 
the late prehistoric time, and many have been found of the 
XVIIIth Dynasty. With the handle lengthened (86) and turned 
forward, this became the plough (87 is the hieroglyph, 88 the 
drawing, of a plough) ; this was always sloping, and never the 
upright post of the Italic type. The rake of wood (89) is usual in 
the Xllth and XVIIIth Dynasties. The fork (90), used for 
tossing straw, was common in the Old Kingdom, but none has 
been found. The sickle was of wood (92), with flints (91) inserted, 
apparently a copy of the ox-jaw and teeth. The notched flints 
for it are common from the 1st to the XVIIIth Dynasty. In 
Roman times the same principle was followed, by making an 
iron sickle with a deep groove, in which was inserted the cutting 
blade of steel (P. E. XXIX.). Shovel-boards, to hold in right (93) 
or left hand for scraping up the grain in winnowing, are usual in 
the XVIIIth Dynasty, and are figured in use in the Old Kingdom 

Pruning knives with curved blades (94) are Italic, and were made 
of iron by the Romans. Corn grinders were flat oval stones, with 
a smaller one lying cross-ways (95), and slid from end to end. 
Such were used from the Old Kingdom down to late times. In 
the Roman period a larger stone was used, with a rectangular 
slab (96) sliding on it, in which a long trough held the grain and 
let it slip out below for grinding. The quern with rotary motion 
is late Roman, and still used by Arabs. The large circular mill- 
stones of Roman age worked by horse-power are usually made 
from slices of granite columns. 

Building Tools. — The adze described above was used for 
dressing blocks of limestone. The brick-mould was an open 
frame, with one side prolonged into a handle (97), exactly as 
the modern mould. The plasterers' floats (98) were entirely 
cut out of wood. The mud rake for mixing mortar is rather 
narrower than the modern form. The square (99) and plummet 
(100,101) have remained unchanged since the XlXth Dynasty. 
For dressing flat surfaces three wooden pegs (102) of equal length 
were used; a string was stretched between the tops of two, 
and the third peg was set on the point to be tested and tried 
against the string. 

Thread-Work: — Stone spindle whorls (103) are common in 
the prehistoric age; wooden ones were usual, of a cylindrical 
form (104) in the Xllth, and conical (105) in the XVIIIth 
Dynasty. The thread was secured by a spiral notch in the stick. 
In Roman times an iron hook on the top held the thread (106) 
as in modern spindles. Needles of copper were made in the 
prehistoric, as early as S.D. 48, and very delicate ones by S.D. 71. 
Gold needles are found of the 1st Dynasty. Fine ones of 
bronze are common in the XVIIIth Dynasty, and some with 
two eyes at right angles, one above the other, to carry two 
different threads. The copper bodkin is found in S.D. 70. 
Netters are common, of rib bones, pointed (107); the thread 
was wound round them. Long netting needles were probably 
brought in by the dynastic people as they figure in the hiero- 
glyphs. Finely-made ones are found in the XVIIIth Dynasty 
and later. Reels were also commonly used for net making, of 
pottery (108) or even pebbles (109) with a groove chipped around. 
The flint vase-grinders were used in the early dynasties (no), 
and also sandstone grinders for hollowing larger vases (in). 

Stone-Work. — In the prehistoric ages stone building was 
unknown, but many varieties of stones were used for carving 
into vases, amulets and ornaments. The stone vases were 
at first of cylindrical forms, with a foot, and ears for hanging. 
These are worked in brown basalt, syenite, porphyry, alabaster 
and limestone. In the second prehistoric civilization barrel- 
shaped vases became usual; and to the former materials were 
added slate, grey limestone and breccia. Serpentine appears 
later, and diorite towards the close of the prehistoric ages. 
Flat dishes were used in earlier times; gradually deeper forms 
appear, and lastly the deep bowl with turned-in edge belongs to 
the close of the prehistoric time and continued common in the 
earlier dynasties (P.D.P. 19). This stone-work was usually 
formed on the outside with rotary motion, but sometimes the 
vase was rotated upon the grinder (Q. H. 17). The interior was 
ground out by cutters (figs. 110,111) fixed in the end of a stick 
and revolved with a weight on the top, as shown in scenes on 
the tombs of the Vth Dynasty. The cutters were sometimes 
flints of a crescent shape (P. Ab. ii. liii. 24), but more usually 
grinders blocks of quartzite sandstone (26-34), and occasionally 
of diorite (Q. H. xxxii. lxii.). These blocks were fed with sand 
and water to give the bite on the stone (P. Ab. i. 26). The 
outsides of the vases were entirely wrought by handwork, with 
the polishing lines crossing diagonally. Probably the first 
forming was done by chipping and hammer-dressing, as in later 
times; the final facing of the hard stones was doubtless by 
means of emery in block or powder, as emery grinding blocks 
are found. 

In the early dynasties the hard stones were still worked, 
and the 1st dynasty was the most splendid age for vases, bowls, 
and dishes of the finest stones. The royal tombs have preserved 
an enormous quantity of fragments, from which five hundred 




varied forms have been drawn (P.R.T. ii. xlvi.-liii. 6). The 
materials are quartz crystal, basalt, porphyry, syenite, granite, 
volcanic ash, various metamqrphics, serpentine, slate, dolomite 
marble, alabaster, many coloured marbles, saccharine marble, 
grey and white limestones. The most splendid vase is one from 
Nekhen (Hieraconpolis), of syenite, 2 ft. across and 16 in. high, 
hollowed so as to be marvellously light and highly polished 
(Q. H. xxxvii). Another branch of stone- work, surface 
carving, was early developed by the artistic dynastic race. 
The great palettes of slate covered with elaborate reliefs are 
probably all of the pre-Menite kings; the most advanced of 
them having the figure of Narmer, who preceded Menes. Other 
carving full of detail is on the great mace-heads of Narmer 
and the Scorpion king, where scenes of ceremonials are minutely 
engraved in relief. In the 1st Dynasty the large tombstones 
of the kings are of bold work, but the smaller stones of private 
graves vary much in the style, many being very coarse. All 
of this work was by hammer-dressing and scraping. The scrapers 
seem to have always been of copper. 

The earliest use of stone in buildings is in the tomb of King 
Den (1st Dynasty), where some large flat blocks of red granite 
seem to have been part of the construction. The oldest stone 
chamber known is that of Khasekhemui (end of the Ilnd 
Dynasty) . This is of blocks of limestone whose faces follow the 
natural cleavages, and only dressed where needful; part is 
hammer-dressed, but most of the surfaces are adze-dressed. 
The adze was of stone, probably flint, and had a short handle 
(P.R.T. ii. 13). The same king also wrought granite with 
inscriptions in relief. In the close of the Illrd Dynasty a great 
impetus was given to stone-work, and the grandest period of 
refined masonry is at the beginning of the IVth Dynasty under 
Cheops. The tombs of Medum under Snefru are built with 
immense blocks of limestone of 20 and 33 tons weight. The 
dressing of the face between the hieroglyphs was done partly 
with copper and partly with flint scrapers (P.M. 27). The 
most splendid masonry is that of the Great Pyramid of Cheops. 
The blocks of granite for the roofing are 56 in number, of an 
average weight of 54 tons each. These were cut from the 
water-worn rocks at the Cataract — the soundest source for 
large masses, as any incipient flaws are well exposed by wear. 
The blocks were quarried by cleavage; a groove was run along 
the line intended, and about 2 ft. apart holes about 4 in. wide 
were jumped downward from it in the intended plane; this 
prevented a skew fracture (P.T. 93). In shallower masses a 
groove was run, and then holes, apparently for wedges, were 
sunk deeper in the course of it; whether wetted wood was used 
for the expansive force is not known, but it is probable, as no 
signs are visible of crushing the granite by hard wedges. The 
facing of the cloven surfaces was done by hammer-dressing, 
using rounded masses of quartzose hornstone, held in the hand 
without any handle. In order to get a hold for moving the 
blocks without bruising the edges, projecting lumps or bosses 
were left on the faces, about 6 or 8 in. across and 1 or 2 in. thick. 
After the block was in place the boss was struck off and the 
surface dressed and polished (P.T. 78, 82). In the pyramid of 
Cheops the blocks were all faced before building; but the later 
granite temple of Chephren and the pyramid of Mycerinus 
(Menkaura, Menkeure) show a system of building with an excess 
of a few inches left rough on the outer surface, which was dressed 
away when in position (P.T. no, 132). 

The flatness of faces of stone or rock (both granite and lime- 
stone) was tested by placing a true-plane trial plate, smeared 
with red ochre, against the dressed surface, as in modern engineer- 
ing. The contact being thus reddened showed where the face 
had to be further dressed away; and this process was continued 
until the ochre touched points not more than an inch apart all 
over the joint faces, many square feet in area. On stones too 
large for facing-plates a diagonal draft was run, so as to avoid 
any wind in the plane (P.T. 83). 

The cutting of granite was not only by cleavage and hammer 
dressing, but also by cutting with harder materials than quartz 
wen as emery. Long saws of copper were fed with emery powder, 

and used to saw out blocks as much as 75 ft. long (P.T. Plate 
XIV.). In other cases the very deep scores in the sides of the 
saw-cut suggest that fixed cutting points were inserted in the 
copper saws ; and this would be parallel to the saw-cuts in the 
very hard limestone of the Palace of Tiryns, in which a piece 
of a copper saw has been broken, and where may be yet found 
large chips of emery, too long and coarse to serve as a powder, 
but suited for fixed teeth. A similar method was common for 
circular holes, which were cut by a tube, either with powder or 
fixed teeth. These tubular drills were used from the IVth 
Dynasty down to late times, in all materials from alabaster up 
to carnelian. The resulting cores are more regular than those 
of modern rock-drilling. 

Limestone in the Great Pyramid, as elsewhere, was dressed 
by chopping it with an adze, a tool used from prehistoric to 
Roman times for all soft stones and wood. This method was 
carried on up to the point of getting contact with the facing- 
plate at every inch of the surface; the cuts cross in various 
directions. For removing rock in reducing a surface to a level, 
or in quarrying, cuts were made with a pick, forming straight 
trenches, and the blocks were then broken out between these. 
In quarrying the cuts are generally 4 or 5 in. wide, just enough 
for the workman's arm to reach in; for cutting away rock the 
grooves are 20 in. Wide, enough to stand in, and the squares of 
rock about 9 ft. wide between the grooves (P.T. 100). The 
accuracy of the workmanship in the IVth Dynasty is astonishing. 
The base of the pyramid of Snefru had an average variation of 
6 in. on- 5765 and 10' of squareness. But, immediately after, 
Cheops improved on this with a variation of less than 6 in. on 
9069 in. and 12" of direction. Chephren fell off, having 1-5 
error on 8475, and 33" of variation; and Mycerinus (Menkeure) 
had 3 in. error on 4154 and 1' 50" variation of direction (P.M. 6; 
P.T. 39, 97, in). Of perhaps later date the two south pyramids 
of Dahshur show errors of 3-7 on 7459 and i-i on 2065 in., and 
variation of direction of 4' and 10' (P.S. 28, 30). The above 
smallest error of only 1 in 16,000 in lineal measure, and 1 in 
17,000 of angular measure, is that of the rock-cutting for the 
foundation of Khufu, and the masonry itself (now destroyed) 
was doubtless more accurate. The error of flatness of the joints 
from a straight line and a true square is but rJ-oth in. on 75 in. 
length; and the error of level is only ^th in. along a course, or 
about 10" on a long length (P.T. 44). We have entered thus 
fully on the details of this period, as it is the finest age fo"r work- 
manship in every respect. But in the Xllth Dynasty the granite 
sarcophagus of Senwosri II. is perhaps the finest single piece of 
cutting yet known; the surfaces of the granite are all dull- 
ground, the errors from straight lines and parallelism are only 
about -yj-g-th inch (P. 1,3). 

In later work we may note that copper scrapers were used for 
facing the limestone work in the Vlth, the Xllth and the 
XVIIIth Dynasties. In the latter age granite surfaces were 
ground, hieroglyphs were chipped out and polished by copper 
tools fed with emery; outlines were graved by a thick sheet of 
copper held in the hand, and sawed to and fro with emery. 
Corners of signs and intersections of lines were first fixed by 
minute tube-drill holes, into which the hand tool butted, so that 
it should not slip over the outer surface. 

The marking out of work was done by fine black lines ; and 
supplemental lines at a fixed distance from the true one were 
put in to guard against obliteration in course of working (P.T. 
92) ; similarly in building a brick pyramid the axis was marked, 
and there were supplemental marks two cubits to one side 
(P.K. 14). When cutting a passage in the rock a rough drift- 
way was first made, the roof was smoothed, a red axis line was 
drawn along it, and then the sides were cut parallel to the axis. 
For setting out a mastaba with sloping sides, on an irregular 
foundation at different levels, hollow corner walls were built 
outside the place of each corner; the distances of the faces at 
the above-ground level were marked on the inner faces of the 
walls; the above-ground level was also marked; then sloping 
lines at the intended angle of the face were drawn downward from 
the ground-level measures, and each face was set out so as to 








\^ r^-^^^ry^ 




22 23 


%* 27 28 29 



RAZORS J "fl^? 






34 35 36 37 '38 







44 45 




The objects are drawn to a scale 

of-g- unless otherwise described. 


Ancient Egyptian Tools. 



FTOOLS. &c. 


12 13 



,.74 . 

75 76 



U V9 !° I 1 82 J^L -e==fc 84 

The objects are drawn to a scale 
of -g- unless otherwise described. 




K Of 

105 106 1107 


"1 101 



Ancient Egyptian Tools. 




lie in the plane thus defined by two traces at the ends (P.M. 


Metal-Work.— Copper was wrought into pins, a couple of 
inches long, with loop heads, as early as the oldest prehistoric 
graves, before the use of weaving, and while pottery was scarcely 
developed. The use of harpoons and small chisels of copper next 
arose, then broad flaying knives, needles and adzes, lastly the 
axe when the metal was commoner. On these prehistoric tools, 
when in fine condition, the original highly-polished surface 
remains. It shows no trace of grinding lines or attrition, nor 
yet of the blows of a hammer. Probably it was thus highly 
finished by beating between polished stone hammers which were 
almost flat on the face. Most likely the forms of the tools were 
cast to begin with, and then finished and polished by fine ham- 
mering. A series of moulds for casting in the Xllth Dynasty 
show that the forms were carved out in thick pieces of pottery, 
and then lined with fine ashy clay. The mould was single, so 
that one side of the tool was the open face of metal. As early 
as the pyramid times solid casting by cire perdue was already 
used for figures: but the copper statues of Pepi and his son 
seem, by their thinness and the piecing together of the parts, to 
have been entirely hammered out. The portraiture in such 
hammer work is amazingly life-like. By the time of the Xllth 
Dynasty, and perhaps earlier, cire perdue casting over an ash 
core became usual. This was carried out most skilfully, the 
metal being often not g^th in. thick, and the core truly centred 
in the mould. Casting bronze over iron rods was also done, to 
gain more stiffness for thin parts. 

In gold work the earliest jewelry, that of King Zer of the 
1st Dynasty, shows a perfect mastery of working hollow balls 
with minute threading holes, and of soldering with no trace of 
excess nor difference of colour. Thin wire was hammered out, 
but there is no ancient instance of drawn wire. Castings were 
not trimmed by filing or grinding, but by small chisels and 
hammering (P.R.T. ii. 1 7) . In the Xllth Dynasty the soldering 
of the thin cells for the cloisonnee inlaid pectorals, on to the base 
plate, is a marvellous piece of delicacy; every cell has to be 
perfectly true in form, and yet all soldered, apparently simul- 
taneously, as the heat could not be applied to successive portions 
(M.D. i.). Such work was kept up in the XVIIIth and XXVIth 
Dynasties. There is nothing distinctive in later jewelry different 
from Greek and Roman work elsewhere. 

Glaze and Glass. — From almost the beginning of the prehistoric 
age there are glazed pottery beads found in the graves : and 
glazing on amulets of quartz or other stones begins in the middle 
of the prehistoric. Apparently then glazing went together with 
the working of the copper ores, and probably accidental slags in 
the smelting gave the first idea of using glaze intentionally. The 
development of glazing at the beginning of the dynasties was 
sudden and effective. Large tiles, a foot in length, were glazed 
completely all over, and used to line the walls of rooms; they 
were retained in place by deep dovetails and ties of copper wire. 
Figures of glazed ware became abundant ; a kind of visiting card 
was made with the figure of a man and his titles to present in 
temples which he visited; and glazed ornaments and toggles for 
fastening dresses were common (P. Ab. ii.) . Further, besides thus 
using glaze on a large scale, differently coloured glazes were used, 
and even fused together. A piece of a large tile, and part of a 
glazed vase, have the royal titles and name of Menes, originally in 
violet inlay in green glaze. There was no further advance in the 
art until the great variety of colours came into use about 4000 
years later. In the Xllth Dynasty a very thin smooth glaze was 
used, which became rather thicker in the XVIIIth. The most 
brilliant age of glazes was under Amenophis III. and his son 
Akhenaton. Various colours were used; beside the old green 
and blue, there were purple, violet, red, yellow and white. And a 
profusion of forms is shown by the moulds and actual examples, 
for necklaces, decorations, inlay in stone and applied reliefs on 
vases. Under Seti II. cartouches of the king in violet and white 
glaze are common; and under Rameses III. there were vases with 
relief figures, with painted figures, and tiles with coloured 
reliefs of captives of many races. The latter development of 

glazing was in thin delicate apple-green ware with low relief 
designs, which seem to have originated under Greek influence at 
Naucratis. The Roman glaze is thick and coarse, but usually of a 
brilliant Prussian blue, with dark purple and apple-green; and 
high reliefs of wreaths, and sometimes figures, are common. 

Though glaze begins so early, the use of the glassy matter by 
itself does not occur till the XVIIIth Dynasty; the earlier 
reputed examples are of stone or frit. The first glass is black and 
white under Tethmosis (Tahutmes) III. It was not fused at a 
high point, but kept in a pasty state when working. The main 
use of it was for small vases; these were formed upon a core of 
sandy paste, which was modelled on a copper rod, the rod being 
the core for the neck. Round this core threads of glass were 
wound of various colours; the whole could be reset in the furnace 
to soften it for moulding the foot or neck, or attaching handles, or 
dragging the surface into various patterns. The colours under 
later kings were as varied as those of the glazes. Glass was also 
wheel-cut in patterns and shapes under Akhenaton. In later 
times the main work was in mosaics of extreme delicacy. Glass 
rods were piled together to form a pattern in cross-section. The 
whole was then heated until it perfectly adhered, and the mass 
was drawn out lengthways so as to render the design far more 
minute, and to increase the total length for cutting up. The rod 
was then sliced across, and the pieces used for inlaying. Another 
use of coloured glass was for cutting in the shapes of hieroglyphs 
for inlaying in wooden coffins to form inscriptions. Glass 
amulets were also commonly placed upon Ptolemaic mummies. 
Blown glass vessels are not known until late Greek and Roman 
times, when they were of much the same manufacture as glass 
elsewhere. The supposed figures of glass-blowers in early scenes 
are really those of smiths, blowing their fires by means of reeds 
tipped with clay. The variegated glass beads belonging to Italy 
were greatly used in Egypt in Roman times, and are like those 
found elsewhere. A distinctively late Egyptian use of glass was 
for weights and vase-stamps, to receive an impress stating the 
amount of the weight or measure. The vase-stamps often state 
the name of the contents (always seeds or fruits), probably not to 
show what was in them, but to show for what kind of seed the 
vessel was a true measure. These measure stamps bear names 
dating them from a.d. 680 to about 950. The large weights of 
ounces and pounds are disks or cuboid blocks; they are dated 
from 720 to 785 for the lesser, and to a.d. 915 for larger, weights. 
The greater number are, however, small weights for testing gold 
and silver coins of later caliphs from a.d. 952 to 1171. The 
system was not, however, Arab, as there are a few Roman vase- 
stamps and weights. Of other medieval glass may be noted the 
splendid glass vases for lamps, with Arab inscriptions fused in 
colours on the outsides. No enamelling was ever done by 
Egyptians, and the few rare examples are all of Roman age due 
to foreign work. 

The manufacture of glass is shown by examples in the XVIIIth 
Dynasty. The blue or green colour was made by fritting to- 
gether silica, lime, alkaline carbonate and copper carbonate; 
the latter varied from 3% in delicate blues to 20% in deep 
purple. blues. The silica was needed quite pure from iron, in 
order to get the rich blues, and was obtained from calcined 
quartz pebbles; ordinary sand will only make a green frit. 
These materials were heated in pans in the furnace so as to 
combine in a pasty, half -fused condition. The coloured frit thus 
formed was used as paint in a wet state, and also used to dissolve 
in glass or to fuse over a surface in glazing. The brown tints 
often seen in glazed objects are almost always the result of the 
decomposition of green glazes containing iron. The blue glazes, 
on the other hand, fade into white. The essential colouring 
materials are, for blue, copper; green, copper and iron; purple, 
cobalt; red, haematite; white, tin. An entirely clear colourless 
glass was made in the XVIIIth Dynasty, but coloured glass was 
mainly used. After fusing a panful of coloured glass, it was 
sampled by taking pinches out with tongs; when perfectly 
combined it was left to cool in the pan, as with modern optical 
glass. When cold the pan was chipped away, and the cake of 
glass broken up into convenient pieces, free of sediment and of 




scum. A broken lump would then be heated to softness in the 
furnace; rolled out under a bar of metal, held diagonally across 
the roll; and when reduced to a rod of a quarter of an inch 
thick, it was heated and pulled out into even rods about an 
eighth of an inch thick. These were used to wind round glass 
vases, to form lips, handles, &c. ; and to twist together for 
spiral patterns. Glass tube was similarly drawn out. Beads were 
made by winding thin threads of glass on copper wires, and the 
greater contraction of the copper freed the bead when cold. The 
coiling of beads can always be detected by (i) the little tails left 
at the ends, (2) the streaks, (3) the bubbles, seen with a magnifier. 
Roman glass beads are always drawn out, and nicked off hot, 
with striation lengthways; except the large opaque variegated 
beads which are coiled. Modern Venetian beads are similarly 
coiled. In the XXIIIrd Dynasty beads of a rich transparent 
Prussian blue glass were made, until the XXVIth. About the 
same time the eyed beads, with white and brown eyes in a blue 
mass, also came in (P.A. 25-27, Plate XIII.). 

Pottery (see fig. 112). — The earliest style of pottery is entirely 
hand made, without any rotary motion; the form being built 
up with a flat stick inside and the hand outside, and finally 
scraped and burnished in a vertical direction. The necks of 
vases were the first part finished with rotation, at the middle 
and close of the prehistoric age. Fully turned forms occur in 
the 1st Dynasty; but as late as the XII th Dynasty the lower 
part of small vases is usually trimmed with a knife. In the 
earlier part of the prehistoric age there was a soft brown ware 
with haematite facing, highly burnished. This was burnt 
mouth-down in the oven, and the ashes on the ground reduced 
the red haematite to black magnetic oxide of iron; some traces 
of carbonyl in the ash helped to rearrange the magnetite as a 
brilliant mirror-like surface of intense black. The lower range 
of jars in the oven had then black tops, while the upper ranges 
were entirely red. A favourite decoration was by lines of white 
clay slip, in crossing patterns, figures of animals, and, rarely, 
men. This is exactly of the modern Kabyle style in Algeria, 
and entirely disappeared from Egypt very early in the prehistoric 
age. Being entirely hand made, various oval, doubled and even 
square forms were readily shaped. 

The later prehistoric age is marked by entirely different 
pottery, of a hard pink-brown ware, often with white specks 
in it, without any applied facing beyond an occasional pink 
wash, and no polishing. It is decorated with designs in red line, 
imitating cordage and marbling, and drawings of plants, ostriches 
and ships. The older red polished ware still survived in a coarse 
and degraded character, and both kinds together were carried 
on into the next age (P.D.P.). 

The early dynastic pottery not only shows the decadent end 
of the earlier forms, but also new styles, such as grand jars of 
2 or 3 ft. high which were slung in cordage, and which have 
imitation lines of cordage marked on them. Large ring-stands 
also were brought in, to support jars, so that the damp surfaces 
should not touch the dusty ground. The pyramid times show 
the great jars reduced to short rough pots, while a variety of 
forms of bowls are the most usual types (P.R.T.;. P.D.; 
P. Desh.) 

In the Xllth Dynasty a hard thin drab ware was common, 
like the modern qulleh. water flasks. Drop-shaped jars with 
spherical bases are typical, and scrabbled patterns of incised 
lines. Large jars of light brown pottery were made for storing 
liquids and grain, with narrow necks which just admit the hand 

The XVIIIth Dynasty used a rather softer ware, decorated 
at first with a red edge or band around the top, and under 
Tethmosis (Tahutmes) III. black and red lines were usual. 
Under Amenophis III. blue frit paint was freely used, in lines 
and bands around vases; it spread to large surfaces under 
Amenophis IV., and continued in a poor style into the Ramesside 
age. In the latter part of the XVIIIth and the XlXth Dynasties 
a thick hard light pottery, with white specks and a polished 
drab-white facing, was generally used for all fine purposes. The 
XlXth and XXth Dynasties only show a degradation of the 

types of the XVIIIth; and even through to the XXVth Dynasty 
there is no new movement (P.K.; P.I; P. A.; P.S.T.). 

The XXVIth Dynasty was largely influenced by Greek 
amphorae imported with wine and oil. The native pottery is 
of a very fine paste, smooth and thin, but poor in forms. Cylin- 
drical cups, and jars with cylindrical necks and no brim, are 
typical. The small necks and trivial handles begin now, and are 
very common in Ptolemaic times (P.T. ii.). 

The great period of Roman pottery is marked by the ribbing 
on the outsides. The amphorae began to be ribbed about 
a.d. 1 50, and then ribbing extended to all the forms. The ware 
is generally rather rough, thick and brown for the amphorae, 
thin and red for smaller vessels. At the Constantine age a new 
style begins, of hard pink ware, neatly made, and often with 
" start-patterns " made by a vibrating tool while the vessel 
rotated: this was mainly used for bowls and cups (P.E.). 
Of the later pottery of Arab times we have no precise knowledge. 
The abbreviations used above refer to the following sources of 
information : — 

M.D. Morgan, Dahshur; 

P.A. Petrie, Tell el Amarna; 

P. Ab. „ Abydos; 

P.D. ,, Dendereh; 

P. Desh. „ Deshasheh; 

P.D. P. ,, Diospolis Parva; 

P.E. ,, Ehnasya; 

P.I. ,, Illahun; 

P.K. „ Kahun; 

P.M. ,, Medum; 

P.N. „ Naqada; 

P.R.T. „ Royal Tombs; 

P.S. „ Season in Egypt; 

P.S.T. ,, Six Temples; 

P.T. ,, Pyramids and Temples of Gizeh; 

P.T. ii. ,, Tanis, ii.; 

Q.H. Quibell, Hieraconpolis. (W. M. F. P.) 

Monuments. — The principal monuments that are yet remaining 
to illustrate the art and history of Egypt may be best taken in 
historical order. Of the prehistoric age there are many rock 
carvings, associated with others of later periods: they principally 
remain on the sandstone rocks about Silsila, and their age is 
shown by the figures of ostriches which were extinct in later 
times. One painted tomb was found at Nekhen (Hieraconpolis) , 
now in the Cairo Museum; the brick walls were colour-washed 
and covered with irregular groups of men, animals and ships, 
painted with red, black and green. The cemeteries otherwise 
only contain graves, cut in gravel or brick lined, and formerly 
roofed with poles and brushwood. The 1st to Illrd Dynasties 
have left at Abydos large forts of brickwork, remains of two 
successive temples, and the royal tombs (see Abydos). Else- 
where are but few other monuments; at Wadi Maghara in Sinai 
is a rock sculpture of Semerkhet of the 1st Dynasty in perfect 
state, at Giza is a group of tombs of a prince and retinue of the 
1st Dynasty, and at Giza and Bet Khallaf are two large brick 
mastabas with extensive passages closed by trap-doors, of kings 
of the Illrd Dynasty. The main structure of this age is the 
step-pyramid of Sakkara, which is a mastaba tomb with eleven 
successive coats of masonry, enlarging it to about 350 by 390 ft. 
and 200 ft. high. In the interior is sunk in the rock a chamber 
24X23 ft. and 77 ft. high, with a granite sepulchre built in the 
floor of it, and various passages and chambers branching from 
it. The doorway of one room (now in Berlin Museum) was 
decorated with polychrome glazed tiles with the name of King 
Neterkhet. The complex original work and various alterations 
of it need thorough study, but it is now closed and research is 

The IVth to Vlth Dynasties are best known by the series of 
pyramids (see Pyramid) in the region of Memphis. Beyond 
these tombs, and the temples attached to them, there are very 
few fixed monuments; of Cheops and Pepi I. there are temple 
foundations at Abydos (q.v.), and a few blocks on other sites; 
of Neuserre (Raenuser) there is a sun temple at Abuslr; and of 
several kings there were tablets in Sinai, now inthe Cairo Museum. 
A few tablets of the IXth Dynasty have been found at Sakkara, 
and a tomb of a prince at Assiut. Of the Xlth Dynasty is the 




7000-6000 8.C. 



6000- 5000 b.c. SB H a of ^^ Mm Am ML ■ • 

fill?!t ft f?*** 

4800-4500 B.C, 

4000-3300 B.C. 

Fig. ii2. — Principal Types of Pottery of Ancient Egypt. (Scale i : 20.) 

7 6 



terrace-temple of Menthotp III. recently excavated at Thebes: 
also foundations of this king and of Sankhkere at Abydos. In 
the Xllth Dynasty there is the celebrated red granite obelisk 
of Heliopolis, one of a pair erected by Senwosri (Senusert) I. in 
front of his temple which has now vanished. Another large 
obelisk of red granite, 41 ft. high, remains in the Fayum. The 
most importarft pictorial tombs of Beni Hasan belong to this age; 
the great princes appear to have largely quarried stone for their 
palaces, and to have cut the quarry in the form of a regular 
chamber, which served for the tomb chapel. These great rock 
chambers were covered with paintings, which show a large range 
of the daily life and civilization. The pyramids and temples 
of Senwosri II. and III. and Amenemhe III. remain at Illahun, 
Dahshur and Hawara. The latter was the celebrated Labyrinth, 
which has been entirely quarried away, so that only banks of 
chips and a few blocks remain. At the first of these sites is 
the most perfect early town, of which hundreds of houses still 
remain. Of Senwosri III. there are the forts and temples above 
the second cataract at Semna and Kumma. Of the Hyksos age 
there are the scanty remains of a great fortified camp at Tell 

In the XVTIIth to XXth Dynasties we reach the great period 
of monuments. Of Amasis (Aahmes) and Amenophis I. there 
are but fragments left in later buildings; and of the latter a 
great quantity of sculpture has been recovered at Karnak. 
The great temple of Karnak had existed since the Xlth Dynasty 
or earlier, but the existing structure was begun under Tethmosis 
(Tahutmes) I., and two of the great pylons and one obelisk of 
his remain in place. He also built the simple and dignified 
temple of Medinet Habu at Thebes, which was afterward over- 
shadowed by the grandiose work of Rameses III. The next 
generation — Tethmosis II. and Hatshepsut — added to their 
father's work; they also built another pylon and some of the 
existing chambers at Karnak, set up the great obelisks there 
and carved some colossi. The obelisks are exquisitely cut in 
red granite, each sign being sawn in shape by copper tools fed 
with emery, and the whole finished with a perfection of pro- 
portion and delicacy not seen on other granite work. One 
obelisk being overthrown and broken we can examine the minute 
treatment of the upper part, which was nearly a hundred feet 
from the ground. The principal monument of this period is 
the temple of Deir el Bahri, the funeral temple of Hatshepsut, 
on which she recorded the principal event of her reign, the expedi- 
tion to Punt. The erasures of her name by Tethmosis III., and 
reinsertions of names under later kings, the military scenes, and 
the religious groups showing the sacred kine of Hathor, all add 
to the interest of the remarkable temple. It stands on three 
successive terraces, rising to the base of the high limestone cliffs 
behind it. The rock-cut shrine at Speos Artemidos, and the 
temple of Serablt in Sinai are the only other large monuments 
of this queen yet remaining. Tethmosis III. was one of the 
great builders of Egypt, and much remains of his work, at about 
forty different sites. The great temple of Karnak was largely 
built by him ; most of the remaining chambers are his, including 
the beautiful botanical walls showing foreign plants. Of his 
work at Heliopolis there remain the obelisks of London and 
New York; and from Elephantine is the obelisk at Sion House. 
On the Nubian sites his work may still be seen at Amada, 
Ellesla, Ibrim, Semna and in Sinai at Serablt el Khadem. Of 
Amenophis II. and Tethmosis IV. there are no large monuments, 
they being mainly known by additions at Karnak. The well 
known stele of the sphinx was cut by the latter king, to com- 
memorate his dream there and his clearing of the sphinx 
from sand. Amenophis III. has left several large buildings 
of his magnificent reign. At Karnak the temple had a new 
front added as a great pylon, which was later used as the 
back of the hall of columns by Seti I. But three new temples 
at Karnak, that of Month (Mentu), of Mut and a smaller one, 
all are due to this reign, as well as the long avenue of sphinxes 
before the temple of Khons; these indicate that the present 
Ramesside temple of Khons has superseded an earlier one of 
this king. The great temple ef Luxor was built to record the 

divine origin of the king as son of Ammon; and on the western 
side of Thebes the funerary temple of Amenophis was an immense 
pile, of which the two colossi of the Theban plain still stand 
before the front of the site, where yet lies a vast tablet of sand- 
stone 30 ft. high. The other principal buildings are the temples 
of Sedenga and of Solib in Nubia. Akhenaton has been so 
consistently eclipsed by the later kings who destroyed his work, 
that the painted pavement and the rock tablets of Tell el Amarna 
are the only monuments of his still in position, beside a few 
small inscriptions. Harmahib (Horemheb) resumed the work 
at Karnak, erecting two great pylons and a long avenue of 
sphinxes. The rock temple at Silsila and a shrine at Jebel Adda 
are also his. 

In the XlXth Dynasty the great age of building continued, 
and the remains are less destroyed than the earlier temples, 
because there were subsequently fewer unscrupulous rulers to 
quarry them away. Seti I. greatly extended the national temple 
of Karnak by his immense hall of columns added in front of the 
pylon of Amenophis III. His funerary temple at Kurna is 
also in a fairly complete condition. The temple of Abydos is 
celebrated owing to its completeness, and the perfect condition 
of its sculptures, which render it one of the most interesting 
buildings as an artistic monument; and the variety of religious 
subjects adds to its importance. The very long reign and 
vanity of Rameses II. have combined to leave his name at over 
sixty sites, more widely spread than that of any other king. 
Yet very few great monuments were originated by him; even 
the Ramesseum, his funerary temple, was begun by his father. 
Additions, appropriations of earlier works and scattered inscrip- 
tions are what mark this reign. The principal remaining build- 
ings are part of a court at Memphis, the second temple at Abydos, 
and the six Nubian temples of Bet el-Wali, Jerf Husein, Wadi 
es-Sebua, Derr, and the grandest of all — the rock-cut temple 
of Abu Simbel, with its neighbouring temple of Hathor. 
Mineptah has left few original works; the Osireum at Abydos 
is the only one of which much remains, his funerary temple 
having been destroyed as completely as he destroyed that of 
Amenophis III. The celebrated Israel stele from this temple 
in his principal inscription. The rock shrines at Silsila are of 
small importance. There is no noticeable monument of the 
dozen troubled years of the end of the dynasty. 

The XXth Dynasty opened with the great builder Rameses 
III. Probably he did not really exceed other kings in his 
activity; but as being the last of the building kings at the 
western side of Thebes, his temple has never been devastated 
for stone by the claims of later work. The whole building of 
Medinet Habu is about 500 ft. long and 160 wide, entirely the 
work of one reign. The sculptures of it are mainly occupied 
with the campaigns of the king against the Libyans, the Syrians 
and the negroes, and are of the greatest importance for the 
history of Egypt and of the Mediterranean lands. Another 
large work was the clearance and rebuilding of much of the city 
of Tell el Yehudia, the palace hall of which contained the cele- 
brated coloured tiles with figures of captives. At Karnak three 
temples, to Ammon, Khonsu and Mut, all belong to this reign. 
The blighted reigns of the later Ramessides and the priest -kings 
did not leave a single great monument, and they are only known 
by usurpations of the work of others. The Tanite kings of the 
XXIst Dynasty rebuilt the temple of their capital, but did little 
else. The XXIInd Dynasty returned to monumental work. 
Sheshonk I. added a large wall at Karnak, covered with the 
record of his Judaean war. Osorkon (Uasarkon) I. built largely 
at Bubastis, and Osorkon II. added the great granite pylon 
there, covered with scenes of his festival; but at Thebes these 
kings only inscribed previous monuments. The Ethiopian 
(XXVth) dynasty built mainly in their capital under Mount 
Barkal, and Shabako and Tirhaka (Tahrak) also left chapels 
and a pylon at Thebes; and the latter added a great colonnade 
leading up to the temple of Karnak, of which one column is still 

Of the Saite kings there are very few large monuments. 
Their work was mainly of limestone and built in the Delta, and 




hence it has been entirely swept away. The square fort of brick- 
work at Daphnae (q.v.) was built by Psammetichus I. Of 
Apries (Haa-ab-ra, Hophra) an obelisk and two monolith shrines 
are the principal remains. Of Amasis (Aahmes) II. five great 
shrines are known; but the other kings of this age have only 
left minor works. The Persians kept up Egyptian monuments. 
Darius I. quarried largely, and left a series of great granite 
decrees along his Suez canal; he also built the great temple in 
the oasis of Kharga. 

The XXXth Dynasty renewed the period of great temples. 
Nekhtharheb built the temple of Behbet, now a ruinous heap 
of immense blocks of granite. Beside other temples, now 
destroyed, he set up the great west pylon of Karnak, and the 
pylon at Kharga. Nekhtnebf built the Hathor temple and 
great pylon at Philae, and the east pylon of Karnak, beside 
temples elsewhere, now vanished. Religious building was 
continued under the Ptolemies and Romans; and though the 
royal impulse may not have been strong, yet the wealth of the 
land under good government supplied means for many places 
to rebuild their old shrines magnificently. In the Fayum the 
capital was dedicated to Queen Arsinoe, and doubtless Ptolemy 
rebuilt the temple, now destroyed. At Sharona are remains of 
a temple of Ptolemy I. Dendera is one of the most complete 
temples, giving a noble idea of the appearance of such work 
anciently. The body of the temple is of Ptolemy XIII. , and 
was carved as late as the XVIth (Caesarion), and the great 
portico was in building from Augustus to Nero. At Coptos was 
a screen of the temple of Ptolemy I. (now at Oxford), and a 
chapel still remains of Ptolemy XIII. Karnak was largely 
decorated; a granite cella was built under Philip Arrhidaeus, 
covered with elaborate carving; a great pylon was added to 
the temple of Khonsu by Ptolemy III.; the inner pylon of 
the Ammon-temple was carved by Ptolemy VI. and IX; and 
granite doorways were added to the temples of Month and Mut 
by Ptolemy II. At Luxor the entire cella was rebuilt by 
Alexander. At Medlnet Habu the temple of Tethmosis III. had 
a doorway built by Ptolemy X., and a forecourt by Antoninus. 
The smaller temple was built under Ptolemy X. and the 
emperors. South of Medlnet Habii a small temple was built 
by Hadrian and Antoninus. At Esna the great temple was 
rebuilt and inscribed during a couple of centuries from Titus 
to Decius. At El Kab the temple dates from Ptolemy IX. and 
X. The great temple of Edfu, which has its enclosure walls and 
pylon complete, and is the most perfect example remaining, was 
gradually built during a century and a half from Ptolemy III. 
to XL The monuments of Philae begin with the wall of Nekht- 
nebf. Ptolemy II. began the great temple, and the temple of 
Arhesnofer (Arsenuphis) is due to Ptolemy IV., that of Asclepius 
to Ptolemy V., that of Hathor to Ptolemy VI., and the great 
colonnades belong to Ptolemy XIII. and Augustus. The 
beautiful little riverside temple, called the "kiosk," was built 
by Augustus and inscribed by Trajan; and the latest building 
was the arch of Diocletian. 

Farther south, in Nubia, the temples of Dabod and Dakka 
were built by the Ethiopian Ergamenes, contemporary of 
Ptolemy IV.; and the temple of Dendur is of Augustus. The 
latest building of the temple style is the White Monastery near 
Suhag. The external form is that of a great temple, with 
windows added along the top; while internally it was a Christian 
church. The modern dwellings in it have now been cleared out, 
and the interior admirably preserved and cleaned by a native 
Syrian architect. 

Beside the great monuments, which we have now noticed, 
the historical material is found on several other classes of remains. 
These are: (i) The royal tombs, which in the Vth, Vlth, 
XVIIIth, XlXth and XXth Dynasties are fully inscribed; 
but as the texts are always religious and not historical, they are 
less important than many other remains. (2) The royal coffins 
and wrappings, which give information by the added graffiti 
recording their removals; (3) Royal tablets, which are of the 
highest value for history, as they often describe or imply historical 
events; (4) Private tombs and tablets, which are in many cases 

biographical. (5) Papyri concerning daily affairs which throw 
light on history; or which give historic detail, as the great 
papyrus of Rameses III., and the trials under Rameses X. 
(6) The added inscriptions on buildings by later restorers, and 
alterations of names for misappropriation. (7) The statues 
which give the royal portraits, and sometimes historical facts. 
(8) The ostraca, or rough notes of work accounts, and plans 
drawn on pieces of limestone or pottery. (9) The scarabs 
bearing kings' names, which under the Hyksos and in some other 
dark periods, are our main source of information. (10) The 
miscellaneous small remains of toilet objects, ornaments, weapons, 
&c, many of which bear royal names. 

Every object and monument with a royal name will be found 
catalogued under each reign in Petrie's History of Egypt, 3 vols., 
the last editions of each being the fullest. (W. M. F. P.) 

F. Chronology. — 1. Technical. — The standard year of the Ancient 
Egyptians consisted of twelve months of thirty days 1 each, with 
five epagomenal days, in all 365 days. It was thus an effective 
compromise between the solar year and the lunar month, and 
contrasts very favourably with the intricate and clumsy years 
of other ancient systems. The leap-year of the Julian and 
Gregorian calendars confers the immense benefit of a fixed 
correspondence to the seasons which the Egyptian year did not 
possess, but the uniform length of the Egyptian months is 
enviable even now. The months were grouped under three 
seasons of four months each, and were known respectively as 

the first, second, third and fourth month 
of TYfyr ® O Q-'b-t) " inundation " or " verdure," 
pro) " seed-time," " winter," and 

I , II , III ,1111 

crzi o- 

p r -t 

A/VW\* (7) 
AA/W\A w 


; harvest," " summer," the — rr 

-- §■ 

mw (shdm) 

: five (days) 

over the year " being outside these seasons and the year itself, 
according to the Egyptian expression, and counted either at 
the beginning or at the end of the year. Ultimately the 
Egyptians gave names to the months taken from festivals 
celebrated in them, in order as follows: — Thoth, Paophi, Athyr, 
Choiak, Tobi, Mechir, Phamenoth, Pharmuthi, Pachons, Payni, 
Epiphi, Mesore, the epagomenal days being then called " the 
short year." In Egypt the agricultural seasons depend more 
immediately on the Nile than on the solar movements; the first 
day of the first month of inundation, i.e. nominally the beginning 
of the rise of the Nile, was the beginning of the year, and as the 
Nile commences to rise very regularly at about the date of the 
annual heliacal rising of the conspicuous dog-star Sothis (Sirius} 
(which itself follows extremely closely the slow retrogression 
of the Julian year), the primitive astronomers found in the 
heliacal rising of Sothis as observed at Memphis (on July 19 
Julian) a very correct and useful starting-point for the seasonal 
year. But the year of 365 days lost one day in four years of the 
Sothic or Julian year, so that in 121 Egyptian years New Year's 
day fell a whole month too early according to the seasons, and 
in 1461 years a whole year was lost. This " Sothic period " 
or era of 1460 years, during which the Egyptian New 
Year's day travelled all round the Sothic year, is recorded by 
Greek and Roman writers at least as early as the 1st century 
B.C. The epagomenal days appear on a monument of the Vth 
Dynasty and in the very ancient Pyramid texts. They were 
considered unlucky, and perhaps this accounts for the curious 
fact that, although they are named in journals and in festival 
lists, &c, where precise dating was needed, no known 
monument or legal document is dated in them. It is, however, 
quite possible that by the side of the year of 365 days a shorter 
year of 360 was employed for some purposes. Lunar months 

1 Ten-day periods as subdivisions of the month can be traced 
as far back as the Middle Kingdom. The day consisted of twenty- 
four hours, twelve of day (counted from sunrise to sunset) and twelve 
of night ; it began at sunrise. 




were observed in the regulation of temples, and lunar years, &c, 
have been suspected. To find uniformity in any department 
in Egyptian practice would be exceptional. By the decree of 
Canopus, Ptolemy III.Euergetes introduced through the assembly 
of priests an extra day every fourth year, but this reform had 
no acceptation until it was reimposed by Augustus with the 
Julian calendar. Whether any earlier attempt was made to 
adjust the civil to the solar or Sothic year in order to restore 
the festivals to their proper places in the seasons temporarily 
or otherwise, is a question of great importance for chronology, 
but at present it remains unanswered. Probably neither the 
Sothic nor any other era was employed by the ancient Egyptians, 
who dated solely by regnal years (see below). An inscription 
of Rameses II. at Tanis is dated in the 400th year of the reign 
of the god Seth of Ombos, probably with reference to some 
religious ordinance during the rule of the Seth-worshipping 
Hyksos; Rameses II. may well have celebrated its quater- 
centenary, but it is wrong to argue from this piece of evidence 
alone tha* an era of Seth was ever observed. 

From the Middle Kingdom onward to the Roman period, the 
dates upon Egyptian documents are given in regnal years. 
On the oldest monuments the years in a reign were not numhered 
consecutively but were named after events; thus in the 1st 
Dynasty we find " the year of smiting the Antiu-people," in the 
beginning of the Illrd Dynasty " the year of fighting and smiting 
the people of Lower Egypt." But under the Ilnd Dynasty 
there was a census of property for taxation every two years, 
and the custom, 'continuing (with some irregularities) for a long 
time, offered a uniform mode of marking years, whether current 
or past. Thus such dates are met with as " the year of the third 
time of numbering " of a particular king, the next being desig- 
nated as " the year after the third time of numbering." Under 
the Vth Dynasty this method was so much the rule that the 
words " of numbering " were commonly omitted. It would seem 
that in the course of the next dynasty the census became annual 
instead of biennial, so that the " times " agreed with the actual 
years of reign; thenceforward their consecutive designation as 
"first time," "second time," for "first year," "second year," 
was as simple as it well could be, and lasted unchanged to the 
fall of paganism. The question arises from what point these 
regnal dates were calculated. Successive regnal years might 
begin (1) on the anniversary of the king's accession, or (2) 
on the calendrical beginning in each year (normally on the 
first day of the nominal First month of inundation, i.e. 
1st Thoth in the later calendar). In the latter case there 
would be a further consideration: was the portion of a 
calendar year following the accession of the new king counted 
to the last year of the outgoing king, or to the first year of the 
new king? In Dynasties I., IV.-V., XVIII. there are instances 
of the first mode (1), in Dynasties II., VI. (?), XII., XXVI. and 
onwards they follow the second (2). It may be that the practice 
was not uniform in all documents even of the same age. In 
Ptolemaic times not only were Macedonian dates sometimes 
given in Greek documents, but there were certainly two native 
modes of dating current; down to the reign of Euergetes there 
was a " fiscal " dating in papyri, according to which the year 
began in Paophi, besides a civil dating probably from Thoth; 
later, all the dates in papyri start from Thoth. 

The Macedonian year is found in early Ptolemaic documents. 
The fixed year of the Canopic decree under Euergetes (with 
1st Thoth on Oct. 22) was never adopted. Augustus estab- 
lished an " Alexandrian " era with the fixed Julian year, 
retaining the Egyptian months, with a sixth epagomenal day 
every fourth year. The capture of Alexandria having taken 
place on the 1st of August 30 B.C., the era began nominally 
in 30 B.C., but it was not actually introduced till some years later, 
from which time the 1st Thoth corresponded with the 29th 
of August in the Julian year. The vague " Egyptian " year, 
however, continued in use in native documents for some centuries 
along with the Alexandrian " Ionian " year. The era of Dio- 
cletian dates from the 29th of August 284, the year of his reforms; 
later, however, the Christians called it the era of the Martyrs 

(though the persecution was not until 302), and it survived the 
Arab conquest. The dating by indictions, i.e. Roman tax- 
censuses, taking place every fifteenth year, probably originated 
in Egypt, in a.d. 312, the year of the defeat of Maxentius. The 
indictions began in Payni of the fixed year, when the harvest 
had been secured. 

See F. K. Ginzel, Handbuch der mathematischen und technischen 
Chronologie, Bd. i. (Leipzig, 1906), and the bibliography in the 
following section. 

2. Historical. 1 — As to absolute chronology, the assigning of 
a regnal year to a definite date B.C. is clear enough (except in 
occasional detail) from the conquest by Alexander onwards. 
Before that time, in spite of successive efforts to establish a 
chronology, the problem is very obscure. The materials for 
reconstructing the absolute chronology are of several kinds: 
(1) Regnal dates as given on contemporary monuments may 
indicate the lengths of individual reigns, but not with accuracy, 
as they seldom reach to the end of a reign and do not allow for 
co-regencies. Records of the time that has elapsed between two 
regnal dates in the reigns of different kings are very helpful; 
thus stelae from the Serapeum recording the ages of the Apis 
bulls with the dates of their birth and death have fixed the 
chronology of the XXVIth Dynasty. Traditional evidence for 
the lengths of reigns exists in the Turin Papyrus of kings and 
in Manetho's history; unfortunately the papyrus is very frag- 
mentary and preserves few reign-lengths entire, and Manetho's 
evidence seems very untrustworthy, being known only from 
late excerpts. (2) The duration of a period may be calculated 
by generations ot the probable average lengths of reigns, but such 
calculations are of little value, and the succession of generations 
even when the evidence seems to be full is particularly difficult 
to ascertain in Egyptian, owing to adoptions and the repetition 
of the same name even in one family of brothers and sisters. 

(3) Synchronisms in the histories of other countries furnish reliable 
dates—Greek, Persian, Babylonian and Biblical dates for the 
XXVIth Dynasty, Assyrian for the XX Vth; less precise are the 
Biblical date of Rehoboam, contemporary with the invasion 
of Shishak (Sheshonk) in the XXIInd Dynasty, and the date 
of the Babylonian and Assyrian kings contemporary with 
Amenhotp IV. in the XVTIIth Dynasty. The last, about 1400 
B.C., is the earliest point to which such coincidences reach. 

(4) Astronomical data, especially the heliacal risings of Sothis 
recorded by dates of their celebration in the vague year. These 
are easily calculated on the assumption first that the observations 
were correctly made, secondly that the calendrical dates are in 
the year of 365 days beginning on 1st Thoth, and thirdly that 
this year subsequently underwent no readjustment or other 
alteration before the reign of Euergetes. The assumption may 
be a reasonable one, and if the results agree with probabilities 
as deduced from the rest of the evidence it is wise to adopt it; 
if on the other hand the other evidence seems in any serious 
degree contrary to those results it may be surmised that the 
assumption is faulty in some particular. The harvest date 
referred to below helps to show that the first part of the assump- 
tion is justified. 

The duration of the reigns in several dynasties is fairly well 
known from the incontrovertible evidence of contemporary 
monuments. The XXVIth Dynasty, which lasted 139 years, 
is particularly clear, and synchronisms fix. its regnal dates to the 
years B.C. within an error of one or two years at most. The 
lengths of several reigns in the Xllth, XVIIIth and XlXth 
Dynasties are known, and the sum total for the Xllth Dynasty 
is preserved better than any other in the Turin Papyrus, which 
was written under the XlXth Dynasty. The succession and 
number of the kings are also ascertained for other dynasties, 
together with many regnal dates, but very serious gaps exist 
in the records of the Egyptian monuments, the worst being 
between the Xllth and the XVIIIth Dynasties, between the 
Xlth and the Vlth, and at Dynasties I. -III. For the chronology 
before the time of the XXVIth Dynasty Herodotus's history 

1 For the "sequence" dating (S.D.) used by archaeologists for 
the prehistoric period see above (§ Art and Archaeology, ad init. note). 




is quite worthless. Manetho alone of all authorities offers a 
complete chronology from the 1st Dynasty to the XXXth. In 
the case of the six kings of the XXVIth Dynasty, Africanus, 
the best of his excerptors, gives correct figures for five reigns, 
but attributes six instead of sixteen years to Necho; the other 
excerptors have wrong numbers throughout. For the XlXth 

Meyer 1887 







(minimum date). 

1894, &c. 

1 904- 1 908. 












[ 3i8o 


31 10 





















. 4454 
















































1680 » 

















132 1 



Dynasty Manetho's figures are wrong wherever we can check 
them; the names, too, are seriously faulty. In the XVIIIth 
Dynasty he has too many names and few are clearly identifiable, 
while the numbers are incomprehensible. In the Xllth Dynasty 
the number of the kings is correct and many of the names can 
be justified, but the reign-lengths are nearly, if not quite, all 
wrong. The summations of years for the Dynasties XII. and 
XVIII. are likewise wrong. It seems, therefore, that the known 
texts of Manetho, serviceable as they have been in the recon- 
struction of Egyptian history, cannot be employed as a 
serious guide to the early chronology, since they are faulty 
wherever we can check them, even in the XXVIth 
Dynasty whose kings were so celebrated among the Greeks. 
There remain the astronomical data. Of these, the Sothic 
date furnished by a calendar in the Ebers Papyrus of the 
gth year of Amenophis I. (when interpreted on the assump- 
tion stated above) , and another at Elephantine of an uncertain 
year of Tethmosis III., tally well with each other (1 550-1 546, 
1474-1470 B.C.) and with the Babylonian synchronism (not 
yet accurately determined) under Amenhotp IV. (Akhenaton). 
Another Sothic date of the 7th year of Senwosri III. on a Berlin 
papyrus from Kahun, similarly interpreted (1882-1878 B.C.), 
gives for the Xllth Dynasty a range from 2000 to 1788 B.C. 
This (discovered by L. Borchardt in 1899) 
seems to offer a welcome ray, piercing the 
obscurity of early Egyptian chronology; 
guided by it the historian Ed. Meyer, and 
K. Sethe have framed systems of chronology 
in close agreement with each other, reaching 
back to the 1st Dynasty at about 3400 B.C. 
To Meyer is further due a calculation that 
the Egyptian calendar was introduced in 
4241-4238 B.C. 2 Their results in general 
have been adopted by the " Berlin school," 
including Erman, Steindorff (in Baedeker's 
Egypt) and Breasted in America. Never- 
theless many Egyptologists are unwill- 
ing to accept the new chronology, the 
chief obstacle being that it allows so short an interval for 
the six dynasties between the Xllth and the XVIIIth. If 
the Xllth Dynasty ended about 1790 B.C. and the XVIIIth 

1 Meyer makes XIII. overlap XV. (Hyksos), and XIV. (Xoite), 
contemporary vAth XVI. (Hyksos) and XVII. (Theban). 

2 Reisner (Early Dynastic Cemeteries, p. 126), from his work in the 
prehistoric cemeteries, believes that Egypt was too uncivilized at 
that early date to have performed this scientific feat. 

began about 1570 B.C., taking what seems to be the utmost 
interval that it permits, 220 years have to contain a crowd of 
kings of whom nearly 100 are already known by name from 
monuments and papyri, while fresh names are being added 
annually to the long list; the shattered fragments of the last 
columns in the Turin Papyrus show space for 150 or perhaps 
180 kings of this period, apparently with- 
out reaching the XVIIth Dynasty. An 
estimate of 160 to 200 kings would there- 
fore not be excessive. The dates that have 
come down to us are very few; the only 
ones known from the Hyksos period are of a 
1 2th and a 33rd year. In the Turin Papyrus 
two reign-lengths of less than a year, seven 
others of less than five years each, one of ten 
years and one of thirteen seem attributable 
to the XIHth and XlVth Dynasties. Prob- 
ably most of the reigns were short, as 
Manetho also decidedly indicates. It is 
possible that the compiler of the Turin 
Papyrus, who excluded contemporary reigns 
in the period between the Vlth and the 
Xllth Dynasties, here admitted such; nor 
is a correspondingly large number of kings 
in so short a period without analogies in 
history. Professor Petrie, however, thinks 
it best, while accepting the evidence of the Sirius date, to 
suppose further that a whole Sothic period of 1460 years had 
passed in the interval, making a total of 1650 years for 
the six dynasties in place of 220 years. This, however, 
seems greatly in excess of probability, and several Egypto- 
logists familiar with excavation are willing to accept Meyer's 
figures on archaeological grounds. To the present writer it 
seems that Meyer's chronology provides a convenient working 
theory, but involves such an improbability in regard to the 
interval between the Xllth and the XVIIIth Dynasties that the 
interpretation of the Sothic date on which it is founded must 
be viewed with suspicion until clear facts are found to corroborate 
it. Corroboration has been sought by Mahler, Sethe and Petrie 
in the dates of new moons, of warlike and other expeditions, 
and of high Nile, but their evidence so far is too vague and 
uncertain to affect the question seriously. It is remarkable that 
no records of eclipses are known from Egyptian documents. 
The interesting date of the harvest at El Bersha, quoted by 
Meyer in Breasted, Records, i. p. 48, confirms the Sothic date for 
the Xllth Dynasty in some measure, but it belongs to the same 
age, and therefore its evidence would be equally vitiated with the 
other by any subsequent alteration in the Egyptian calendar. 
Before the discovery of the Kahun Sothic date, Professor Petrie 









1905- 1906. 






(1328), 1322 








1 100 


1 102 


































c. 405 













put the end of the Xllth Dynasty at 2565 B.C.; in 1884 even 
Meyer had suggested 1930 B.C. as its minimum date, thus 
allowing 400 years at the least for the period from the XIHth 
Dynasty to the XVIIth. 

Beyond the Xllth Dynasty estimates must again be vague 
The spacing of the years on the Palermo stone has given rise to 
some calculations for the early dynasties. Others are grounded 
on the dates of certain operations which are likely to have 




taken place at particular seasons of the year so that they can be 
roughly calculated on the Sothic basis, others on Manetho's 
figures, average lengths of reigns, evidence of the Turin Papyrus, 


Table I. page 79 shows the chronology of the first nineteen 
dynasties, according to recent authorities, before and after the 
discovery of the Kahun Sothic date. 

The dates of the earlier dynasties in this table are always 
intended to be only approximate; for instance, Meyer in 1904 
allowed an error of 100 years either of excess or deficiency in 
the dates he assigned to the dynasties from the Xth upwards. 

The other dynasties are dated as in Table II. by different 

See Ed. Meyer, Geschichte des Altertums, Bd. i. (Stuttgart, V 
Geschichte des alten Agyptens (1887), Agyptische Chronologie 
{Abhandl. of Prussian Academy) (Berlin, 1904, with the supplement 
Nachtrdge zur agypt. Chronologie, ib. 1907); K. Sethe, " Beitrage 
zur altesten Geschichte Agyptens " (in his Untersuchungen, Bd. iii.) 
(Leipzig, 1905); J. H. Breasted, Ancient Records of Egypt, " His- 
torical Documents," vol. i. (Chicago, 1906); W. M. F. Petrie, A 
History of Egypt, vol. i. (London, 1884), vol. iii. (1905), Researches in 
Sinai (London, 1906) ; G. Maspero, Histoire ancienne des peuples 
de V orient (Paris, 1904) ; A. Wiedemann, Agyptische Geschichte 
(Gotha, 1884); articles by Mahler and others in the Zeitschrift fur 
agyptische Sprache and Orientalistische Literaturzeitung (recent 
years). (F- Ll - G.) 

III. History 

1. From the Earliest Times to the Moslem Conquest. 

In the absence of a strict chronology, the epochs of Pharaonic 
history are conveniently reckoned in dynasties according to 
Manetho's scheme, and these dynasties are grouped into longer 
periods:— the Old Kingdom (Dynasties I. to VIII.), including 
the Earliest Dynasties (I. to III.) and the Pyramid Period 
(Dynasties IV. to VI.); the Middle Kingdom (Dynasties IX. 
to XVII.), including the Heracleopolite Dynasties (IX. to X.) 
and the Hyksos Period (Dynasties XV. to XVII.); the New 
Empire (Dynasties XVIII. to XX.) ; the Deltaic Dynasties 
(Dynasties XXI. to XXXI.), including the Saite and Persian 
Periods (Dynasties XXVI. to XXXI.). The conquest by 
Alexander ushers in the Hellenistic age, comprising the periods 
of Ptolemaic and Roman rule. 

The Prehistoric Age. — One of the most striking features of 
recent Egyptology is the way in which the earliest ages of the 
civilization, before the conventional Egyptian style was formed, 
have been illustrated by the results of excavation. Until 1895 
there seemed little hope of reaching the records of those remote 
times, although it was plain that the civilization had developed 
in the Nile valley for many centuries before the IVth Dynasty, 
beyond which the earliest known monuments scarcely reached. 
Since that year, however, there has been a steady flow of dis- 
coveries in prehistoric and early historic cemeteries, and, partly 
in consequence of this, monuments already known, such as the 
annals of the Palermo stone, have been made articulate for the 
beginnings of history in Egypt. 

It is probable that certain rudely chipped flints, so-called 
eoliths, in the alluvial gravels (formed generally at the mouth 
of wadis opening on to the Nile) at Thebes and elsewhere, 
are the work of primitive man; but it has been shown that such 
are produced also by natural forces in the rush of torrents. 
On the surface of the desert, at the borders of the valley, palaeo- 
lithic implements of well-defined form are not uncommon, and 
bear the marks of a remote antiquity. In some cases they 
appear to lie where they were chipped on the sites of flint factories. 
Geologists and anthropologists are not yet agreed on the question 
whether the climate and condition of the country have under- 
gone large changes since these implements were deposited. As yet 
none have been found in such association with animal remains 
as would help in deciding their age, nor have any implements 
been discovered in rock-shelters or in caves. 

Of neolithic remains, arrowheads and other implements are 
found in some numbers in the deserts. In the Fayum region, 
about the borders of the ancient Lake of Moeris and beyond, they 

are particularly abundant and interesting in their forms. But 
their age is uncertain; some may be contemporary with the 
advanced culture of the XHth Dynasty in the Nile valley. 
Definite history on the other hand has been gained from the 
wonderful series of " prehistoric " cemeteries excavated by J. de 
Morgan, Petrie, Reisner and others on the desert edgings of the 
cultivated alluvium. The succession of archaeological types 
revealed in them has been tabulated by Petrie in his Diospolis 
Parva; and the detailed publication of Reisner's unusually 
careful researches is bringing much new light on the questions 
involved, amongst other things showing the exact point at which 
the " prehistoric " series merges into the 1st Dynasty, for, as 
might be surmised, in many cases the prehistoric cemeteries 
continued in use under the earliest dynasties. The finest 
pottery, often painted but all hand-made without the wheel, 
belongs to the prehistoric period; so also do the finest flint 
implements, which, in the delicacy and exactitude of their form 
and flaking, surpass all that is known from other countries. 
Metal seems to be entirely absent from the earliest type of 
graves, but immediately thereafter copper begins to appear 
(bronze is hardly to be found before the XHth Dynasty) . The 
paintings on the vases show boats driven by oars and sails 
rudely figured, and the boats bear emblematic standards or 
ensigns. The cemeteries are found throughout Upper and Middle 
Egypt, but as yet have not been met with in the Delta or on 
its borders. This might be accounted for by the inhabitants 
of Lower Egypt having practised a different mode of dis- 
posing of the dead, or by their cemeteries being differently 

Tradition, mythology and later customs make it possible to 
recover a scrap of the political history of that far-off time. 
Menes, the founder of the 1st Dynasty, united the two kingdoms 
of Upper and Lower Egypt. In the prehistoric period, therefore, 
these two realms were separate. The capital of Upper Egypt 
was Nekheb, now represented by the ruins of El Kab, with the 
royal residence across the river at Nekhen (Hieraconpolis) ; that 
of Lower Egypt was at Buto (Puto or Dep) in the marshes, with 
the royal residence in the quarter called Pe. Nekhebi, goddess of 
El Kab, represented the Upper or' Southern Kingdom, which 
was also under the tutelage of the god Seth, the goddess Buto 
and the god Horus similarly presiding over the Lower Kingdom. 
The royal god in the palace of each was a hawk or Horus. The 
spirits of the deceased kings were honoured respectively as 
the jackal-headed spirits of Nekhen and the hawk-headed spirits 
of Pe. As we hear also of the " spirits of On " it is probable that 
Heliopolis was at one time capital of a kingdom. -In after days 
the prehistoric kings were known as " Worshippers of Horus " 
and in Manetho's list they are the veuves " Dead," and r/pwes 
" Heroes," being looked upon as intermediate between the divine 
dynasties and those of human kings. It is impossible to esti- 
mate the duration of the period represented by the pre- 
historic cemeteries; that the two kingdoms existed throughout 
unchanged is hardly probable. 

According to the somatologist Elliott Smith, the most im- 
portant change in the physical character of the people of Upper 
Egypt, in the entire range of Egyptian archaeology, took place 
at the beginning of the dynastic period; and he accounts for this 
by the mingling of the Lower with the Upper Egyptian popula- 
tion, consequent on the uniting of the two countries under one 
rule. From remains of the age of the IVth Dynasty he is able 
to define to some extent the type of the population of Lower 
Egypt as having a better cranial and muscular development than 
that of Upper Egypt, probably through immigration from Syria. 
The advent of the dynasties, however, produced a quickening 
rather than a dislocation in the development of civilization. 

It is doubtful whether we possess any writing of the prehistoric 
age. A few names of the kings of Lower Egypt are preserved 
in the first line of the Palermo stone, but no annals are attached 
to them. Petrie considers that one of the kings buried at 
Abydos, provisionally called Nar-mer and whose real name may 
be Mer or Beza, preceded Menes; of him there are several 
inscribed records, notably a magnificent carved and inscribed 




slate palette found at Hieraconpolis, with figures of the king 
and his vizier, war-standards and prisoners. To identify him 
with Bezau (Boethos) of the Ilnd Dynasty runs counter to much 
archaeological evidence. Sethe places him next after Menes and 
some would identify him with that king. Another inscribed 
palette may be pre-dynastic; it perhaps mentions a king named 
" Scorpion." 

The Old Kingdom. — The names of a number of kings attribut- 
able to the 1st Dynasty are known from their tombs at Abydos. 
Unfortunately, they are almost exclusively Horus 

earliest titles V\ |j|i|i|i| , in place of the personal names by 

which they were recorded in the lists of Abydos and 
Manetho; some, however, of the latter are found, and prove 
that the scribes of the New Kingdom were unable to read 
them correctly. Important changes and improvements took 
place in the writing even during the 1st Dynasty. The personal 
name of Menes p""""! is given by one only of many relics of a 
king whose Horus-name was Aha, " the Fighter." Doubts 
have been expressed about the identification with Menes, but 
it is strongly corroborated by the very archaic style of the 
remains. The name of Aha (Menes) was found in two tombs, 
one at Nagada north of Thebes and nearly opposite the road to 
the Red Sea, the other at Abydos. Manetho makes the 
1st Dynasty Thinite, this being the capital of the nome in which 
Abydos lay. Upper Egypt always had precedence over Lower 
Egypt, and it seems clear that Menes came from the former and 
conquered the latter. According to tradition he founded 
Memphis which lay on the frontier of his conquest; probably 
he resided there as well as at Abydos; at any rate relics of one 
of the later kings of the 1st Dynasty have already been recognized 
in its vast necropolis. Of the eight kings of the 1st Dynasty, 
three — the fifth, sixth and seventh in the Ramesside list of Abydos 
— are positively identified by tomb-remains from Abydos, and 
others are scarcely less certain. Two of the kings have also 
left tablets at the copper and turquoise mines of Wadi Maghara 
in Sinai. The royal tombs are built of brick, but one of them, 
that of Usaphais, had its floor of granite from Elephantine. 
They must have been filled with magnificent furniture and 
provisions of every kind, including annual record-tablets of the 
reigns, carved in ivory and ebony. From a fragment on the 
Palermo stone it is clear that material- existed as late as the 
Vth Dynasty for a brief note of the height of the Nile and other 
particulars in each year of the reign of these kings. 

The Ilnd Dynasty of Manetho appears to have been separated 
from the 1st even on the Palermo stone; it also was Thinite, 
and the tombs of several of its nine (?) kings were found at 
Abydos. The Illrd Dynasty is given as Memphite by Manetho. 
Two of the kings built huge mastaba-tombs at Bet Khallaf near 
Abydos, but the architect and learned scribe Imhotp designed 
for one of these two kings, named Zoser, a second and mightier 
monument at Memphis, the great step-pyramid of Sakkara. In 
Ptolemaic times Imhotp was deified, and the traditional import- 
ance of Zoser is shown by a forged grant of the Dodecaschoenus 
to the cataract god Khnum, purporting to be from his reign, but 
in reality dating from the Ptolemaic age. With Snefru, at the 
end of this dynasty, we reach the beginning of Egyptian history 
as it was known before the recent discoveries. Monuments and 
written records are henceforth more numerous and important, 
and the Palermo annals show a fuller scale of record. The 
events in the three years that are preserved include a successful 
raid upon the negroes, and the construction of ships and gates 
of cedar-wood which must have been brought from the forests 
of the Lebanon. Snefru also set up a tablet at Wadi Maghara in 
Sinai. He built two pyramids, one of them at Medum in steps, 
the other, probably in the perfected form, at Dahshur, both 
lying between Memphis and the Fayum. 

Pyramids did not cease to be built in Egypt till the New 
Kingdom; but from the end of the Illrd to the Vlth Dynasty 
is pre-eminently the time when the royal pyramid in stone was 
the chief monument left by each successive king. Zoser and 
Snefru have been already noticed. The personal name enclosed 

in a cartouche CH is henceforth the commonest title of the 
king. We now reach the IVth Dynasty containing the famous 
nanies of Cheops (q.v.), Chephren (Khafre) and Mycer- 
inus (Menkeure), builders respectively of the Great, 


the Second and the Third Pyramids of Giza. In the period. 
best art of this time there was a grandeur which was 
never again attained. Perhaps the noblest example of Egyptian 
sculpture in the round is a diorite statue of Chephren, one of 
several found by Mariette in the so-called Temple of the Sphinx. 
This " temple " proves to be a monumental gate at the lower 
end of the great causeway leading to the plateau on which the 
pyramids were built. A king Dedefrg, between Cheops and 
Chephren, built a pyramid at Abu-Roash. Shepseskaf is one 
of the last in the dynasty. Tablets of most of these kings have 
been found at the mines of Wadi Maghara. In the neighbourhood 
of the pyramids there are numerous mastabas of the court 
officials with fine sculpture in the chapels, and a few decorated 
tombs from the end of this centralized dynasty of absolute 
monarchs are known in Upper Egypt. A tablet which describes 
Cheops as the builder of various shrines about the Great Sphinx 
has been shown to be a priestly forgery, but the Sphinx itself 
may have been carved out of the rock under the splendid rule 
of the IVth Dynasty. 

The Vth Dynasty is said to be of Elephantine, but this must 
be a mistake. Its kings worshipped Re, the sun, rather than 

Horus, as their ancestor, and the title 

1 son of the Sun : 

began to be written by them before the cartouche containing 
the personal name, while another " solar " cartouche, containing 

a name compounded with Re, followed the title 4?Ss " king 

of Upper and Lower Egypt." Sahure' and the other kings of the 
dynasty built magnificent temples with obelisks dedicated to 
Re, one of which, that of Neuserre at Abuslr, has been thoroughly 
explored. The marvellous tales of the Westcar Papyrus, dating 
from the Middle Kingdom, narrate how three of the kings were 
born of a priestess of Re. The pyramids of several of the kings 
are known. The early ones are at Abuslr, and the best preserved 
of the pyramid temples, that of Sahure, excavated by the 
German Orient-Gesellschaft, in its architecture and sculptured 
scenes has revealed an astonishingly complete development of 
art and architecture as well as of warlike enterprise by sea and 
land at this remote period; the latest pyramid belonging to the 
Vth Dynasty, that of Unas at Sakkara, is inscribed with long 
ritual and magical texts. Exquisitely sculptured tombs of this 
time are very numerous at Memphis and are found throughout 
Upper Egypt. Of work in the traditional temples of the country 
no trace remains, probably because, being in limestone, it has all 
perished. The annals of the Palermo stone were engraved and 
added to during this dynasty; the chief events recorded -for 
the time are gifts and endowments for the temples.- Evidently 
priestly influence was strong at the court. Expeditions to Sinai 
and Puoni (Punt) are commemorated on tablets. 

The Vlth Dynasty if not more vigorous was more articulate; 
inscribed tombs are spread throughout the country. The most 
active of its kings was the third, named Pepi or Phiops, from 
whose pyramid at Sakkara the capital, hjtherto known as 
" White Walls," derived its later name of Memphis (mn-nfr, 
Mempi); a tombstone from Abydos celebrates the activity of a 
certain Una during the reigns of Pepi and his successor in organiz- 
ing expeditions to the Sinai peninsula and south Palestine, and 
in transporting granite from Elephantine and other quarries. 
Herkhuf, prince of Elephantine and an enterprising leader of 
caravans to the south countries both in Nubia and the Libyan 
oases, flourished under Merenre and Pepi II. called Neferkere. 
On one occasion he brought home a dwarf dancer from the Sudan, 
described as being like one brought from Puoni in the time of 
the fifth-dynasty king Assa; this drew from the youthful 
Pepi II. an enthusiastic letter which was engraved in full upon 
the facade of Herkhuf's tomb. The reign of the last-named 
king, begun early, lasted over ninety years, a fact so long 




remembered that even Manetho attributes to him ninety-four 
years; its length probably caused the ruin of the dynasty. The 
local princelings and monarohs had been growing in culture, 
wealth and power, and after Pepi II. an ominous gap in the 
monuments, pointing to civil war, marks the end of the Old 
Kingdom. The Vllth and VHIth Dynasties are said to have 
been Memphite, but of them no record survives beyond some 
names of kings in the lists. 

The Middle Kingdom. — The long Memphite rule was broken 
by the IXth and Xth Dynasties, of Heracleopolis Magna (Hnes) 

in Middle Egypt. Kheti or Achthoes was apparently 
Heracleo- a f avour £te name with the kings, but they are very 
period. obscure. They may have spread their rule by conquest 

over Upper Egypt and then overthrown the Memphite 
dynasty. The chief monuments of the period are certain 
inscribed tombs at Assiiit; it appears that one of the kings, 
whose praenomen was Mikere, supported by a fleet and army 
from Upper Egypt, and especially by the prince of Assiut, was 
restored to his paternal city of Heracleopolis, from which he had 
probably been driven out; his pyramid, however, was built in 
the old royal necropolis at Memphis. Later the princes of 
Thebes asserted their independence and founded the Xlth 
Dynasty, which pushed its frontiers northwards until finally it 
occupied the whole country. Its kings were named Menthotp, 
from Mont, one of the gods of Thebes; others, perhaps sub-kings, 
were named Enyotf (Antef). They were buried at Thebes, 
whence the coffins of several were obtained by the early collectors 
of the 10th century. Nibhotp Menthotp I. probably established 
his rule over all Egypt. The funerary temple of Nebhepre 
Menthotp III., the last but one of these kings, has been excavated 
by the Egypt Exploration Fund at Deir el Bahri, and must have 
been a magnificent monument. His successor Sankhkere 
Menthotp IV. is known to have sent an expedition by the 
Red Sea to Puoni. ' 

The XHth Dynasty is the central point of the Middle King- 
dom, to which the decline of the Memphite and the rise of the 
Heracleopolite - dynasty mark the transition, while the growth 
of Thebes under the Xlth Dynasty is its true starting-point. 
Monuments of the XHth Dynasty are abundant and often of 
splendid design and workmanship, whereas previously there had 
been little produced since the Vlth Dynasty that was not half 
barbarous. Although not much of the history of the XHth 
Dynasty is ascertained, the Turin Papyrus and many dated 
inscriptions fix the succession and length of reign of the eight 
kings very accurately. The troubled times that the kingdom 
had passed through taught the long-lived monarchs the pre- 
caution of associating a competent successor on the throne. 
The nomarchs and the other feudal chiefs were inclined to 
strengthen themselves at the expense of their neighbours; a 
firm hand was required to hold them in check and distribute the 
honours as they were earned by faithful service.. The tombs of 
the most favoured and wealthy princes are magnificent, par- 
ticularly those of certain families in Middle Egypt at Beni Hasan, 
El Bersha, Assiut and Deir Rlfa, and it is probable that each had 
a court and organization within his nome like that of the royal 
palace in miniature. Eventually, in the reigns of Senwosri III. 
and Amenemhe III., the succession of strong kings appears 
to have centralized all authority very completely. The names 
in the dynasty are Amenemhe (Ammenemes) and Senwosri 
(formerly read Usertesen or Senusert). The latter seems to be 
the origin of the Sesostris (q.v.) and Sesoosis of the legends. 
Amenemhe I., the first king, whose connexion with the previous 
dynasty is not known, reigned for thirty years, ten of them being 
in partnership with his son Senwosri I. He had to fight for his 
throne and then reorganize the country, removing his capital 
or residence from Thebes to a central situation near Lisht about 
25 m. south of Memphis. His monuments are widespread in 
Egypt, the quarries and mines in the desert as far as Sinai bear 
witness to his great activity, and we know of an expedition which 
he made against the Nubians. The " Instructions of Amenemhe 
to his son Senwosri," whether really his own or a later composi- 
tion, refer to these things, to his care for his subjects, and to the 

ingratitude with which he was rewarded, an attempt on his life 
having been made by the trusted servants in his own palace. 
The story of Sinuhi is the true or realistic history of a soldier who. 
having overheard the secret intelligence of Amenemhe's death, 
fled in fear to Palestine or Syria and there became rich in the 
favour of the prince of the land; growing old, however, he 
successfully sued for pardon from Senwosri and permission to 
return and die in Egypt. 

Senwosri I. was already the executive partner in the time of 
the co-regency, warring with the Libyans and probably in the 
Sudan. After Amenemhe's death he fully upheld the greatness 
of the dynasty in his long reign of forty-five years. The obelisk 
of Heliopolis is amongst his best-known monuments, and the 
damming of the Lake of Moeris (q.v.) must have been in progress 
in his reign. He built a temple far up the Nile at Wadi Haifa 
and there set up a stela commemorating his victories over the 
tribes of Nubia. The fine tombs of Ameni at Beni Hasan and of 
Hepzefa at Assiut belong to his reign. The pyramids of both 
father and son are at Lisht. 

Amenemhe II. was buried at Dahshur; he was followed by 
Senwosri II., whose pyramid is at Illahun at the mouth of the, 
Fayum. In his reign were executed the fine paintings in the 
tomb of Khnemhotp at Beni Hasan, which include a remarkable 
scene of Semitic Bedouins bringing eye-paint to Egypt from the 
eastern deserts. In Manetho he is identified with Sesostris (see, 
above), but Senwosri I., and still more Senwosri III., have a 
better claim to this distinction. The latter warred in Palestine 
and in Nubia, and marked the south frontier of his kingdom 
by a statue and stelae at Semna beyond the Second Cataract. 
Near his pyramid was discovered the splendid jewelry of some 
princesses of his family (see Jewelry ad init.). The tomb of. 
Thethotp at El Bersha, celebrated for the scene of the transport 
of a colossus amongst its paintings, was finished in this reign. 

Amenemhe III. completed the work of Lake Moeris and began 
a series of observations of the height of the inundation at Semna 
which was continued by his successors. In his long reign of 
forty-six years he built a pyramid at Dahshur, and at Hawara 
near the Lake of Moeris another pyramid together with the 
Labyrinth which seems to have been an enormous funerary 
temple attached to the pyramid. His name was remembered 
in the Fayum during the Graeco-Roman period and his effigy 
worshipped there as Pera-marres, i.e. Pharaoh Marres (Marres 
being his praenomen graecized). Amenemhe IV.'s reign was 
short, and the dynasty ended with a queen Sebeknefru 
(Scemiophris), whose name is found in the scanty remains of 
the Labyrinth. The XHth Dynasty numbered eight rulers and 
lasted for 213 years. Great as it was, it created no empire 
outside the Nile valley, and its most imposing monument, which 
according to the testimony of the ancients rivalled the pyramids, 
is now represented by a vast stratum of chips. 

The history of the following period down to the rise of the New 
Empire is very obscure. Manetho gives us the XIHth (Dios- 
polite) Dynasty, the XlVth (Xoite from Xois in Lower Egypt), 
the XVth and XVIth (Hyksos) and the XVIIth (Diospolite), 
but his names are lost except for the Hyksos kings. The Abydos 
tablet ignores all between the XHth and XVIIIth Dynasties. 
The Turin Papyrus preserves many names on its shattered 
fragments, and the monuments are for ever adding to the list, 
but it is difficult to assign them accurately to their places. The 
Hyksos names can in some cases be recognized by their foreign 
aspect, the peculiar style of the scarabs on which they are en- 
graved or by resemblances to those recorded in Manetho. The 
kings of the XVIIth Dynasty too are generally recognizable 
by the form of their name and other circumstances. Manetho 
indicates marvellous crowding for the XIHth and XlVth 
Dynasties, but it seems better to suggest a total duration of 
joo or 400 years for the whole period than to adopt Meyer's 
estimate of about 210 years (see above, Chronology). 

Amongst the kings of the XIHth Dynasty (including perhaps 
the XlVth), not a few are represented by granite statues of 
colossal size and fine workmanship, especially at Thebes and 
Tarn's, some by architectural fragments, some by graffiti on the 




rocks about the First Cataract. Some few certainly reigned over 
all Egypt. Sebkhotp (Sekhotp, Soxwr^s) is a favourite name, 
no doubt to be connected with the god of the Fayum. Several 
of the Theban kings named Antef (Enyotf) must be placed here 
rather than in the Xlth Dynasty. A decree of one of them 
degrading a monarch who had sided with his enemies was found 
at Coptos engraved on a doorway of Senwosri I. 

In its divided state Egypt would fall an easy prey to the 
foreigner. Manetho says that the Hyksos (q.v.) gained Egypt 

without a blow. Their domination must have lasted 
Tf"*. a considerable time, the Rhind mathematical papyrus 

period. having been copied in the thirty-third year of a king 

Apophis. The monuments and scarabs of the Hyksos 
kings are found throughout Upper and Lower Egypt; those 
of Khian somehow spread as far as Crete and Bagdad. The 
Hyksos, in whom Josephus recognized the children of Israel, 
worshipped their own Syrian deity, identifying him with the 
Egyptian god Seth, and endeavoured to establish his cult 
throughout Egypt to the detriment of the native gods. It is 
to be hoped that definite light may one day be forthcoming on 
the whole of this critical episode which had such a profound 
effect on the character and history of the Egyptian people. The 
spirited overthrow of the Hyksos ushered in the glories in arms 
and arts which marked the New Empire. The XVIIth Dynasty 
probably began the struggle, at first as semi-independent kinglets 
at Thebes. Seqenenre is here a leading name; the mummy 
of the third Seqenenre, the earliest in the great find of royal 
mummies at Deir el Bahri, shows the head frightfully hacked 
and split, perhaps in a battle with the Hyksos. 

The New Empire. — The epithet " new " is generally attached 
to this period, and " empire " instead of " kingdom " marks its 

wider power. The glorious XVIIIth Dynasty seems 
Dynasty. to nave been closely related to the XVIIth. Its first 

task was to crush the Hyksos power in the north-east 
of the Delta; this was fully accomplished by its founder Ahmosi 
(dialectieally Ahmasi, Amosis or Amasis I.) capturing their 
great stronghold of Avaris. Amasis next attacked them in 
S.W. Palestine, where he captured Sharuhen after a siege of three 
years. He fought also in Syria and in Nubia, besides overcoming 
factious opposition in his own land. The principal source for 
the history of this time is the biographical inscription at El Kab 
of a namesake of the king, Ahmosi son of Abana, a sailor and 
warrior whose exploits extend to the reign of Tethmosis I. 
Amenophis I. (Amenhotp), succeeding Amasis, fought in Libya 
and Ethiopia. Tethmosis I. (c. 1 540 B.C.) was perhaps of another 
family, but obtained his title to the throne through his wife 
Ahmosi. After some thirty years of settled rule uninterrupted 
by revolt, Egypt was now strong and rich enough to indulge to 
the full its new taste for war and lust of conquest. It had 
become essentially a military state. The whole of the adminis- 
tration was in the hands of the king with his vizier and other 
court officials; no trace of the feudalism of the Middle King- 
dom survived. Tethmosis thoroughly subdued Cush, which had 
already been placed under the government of a viceroy. This 
province of Cush extended from Napata just below the Fourth 
Cataract on the south to El Kab in the north, so that it included 
the first three nomes of Upper Egypt, which agriculturally were 
not greatly superior to Nubia. Turning next to Syria, Tethmosis 
carried his arms as far as the Euphrates. It is possible that his 
predecessor had also reached this point, but no record survives 
to prove it. These successful campaigns were probably not very 
costly, and prisoners, plunder and tribute poured in from them 
to enrich Egypt. Tethmosis I. made the first of those great 
additions to the temple of the Theban Ammon at Karnak by 
which the Pharaohs of the Empire rendered it by far the greatest 
of the existing temples in the world. The temple of Deir el 
Bahri also was designed by him. Towards the end of his reign, 

his elder sons being dead, Tethmosis associated 
Hatlhep- Hatshepsut, his daughter by Ahmosi, with himself 
sat. upon the throne. Tethmosis I. was the first of the 

long line of kings to be buried in the Valley of the 
Tombs of the Kings of Thebes. At his death another son Teth- 

mosis II. succeeded as the husband of his half-sister, but reigned 
only two or three years, during which he warred in Nubia and 
placed Tethmosis III. , his son by a concubine Esi, upon the throne 
beside him ic. 1 500 B.C.) . After her husband's death the ambitious 
Hatshepsut assumed the full regal power; upon her monuments 
she wears the masculine garb and aspect of a king though the 
feminine gender is retained for her in the inscriptions. On some 
monuments of this period her name appears alone, on others 
in conjunction with that of Tethmosis III., while the latter again 
may appear without the queen's; but this extraordinary woman 
must have had a great influence over her stepson and was the 
acknowledged ruler of Egypt. Tethmosis, to judge by the 
evidence of his mummy and the chronology of his reign, was 
already a grown man, yet no sign of the immense powers which 
he displayed later has come down to us from the joint reign. 
Hatshepsut cultivated the arts of peace. She restored the 
worship in those temples of Upper and Lower Egypt which had 
not yet recovered from the religious oppression and neglect 
of the Hyksos. She completed and decorated the temple of Deir 
el Bahri, embellishing its walls with scenes calculated to establish 
her claims, representing her divine origin arid upbringing under 
the protection of Ammon, and her association on the throne 
by her human father. The famous sculptures of the great 
expedition by water to Puoni, the land of incense on the Somali 
coast, are also here, with many others. At Karnak Hatshepsut 
laboured chiefly to complete the works projected in the reigns 
of Tethmosis I. and II., and set up two obelisks in front of the 
entrance as it then was. One of these, still standing, is the most 
brilliant ornament of that wonderful temple. A date of the 
twenty-second year of her reign has been found at Sinai, no doubt 
counted from the beginning of the co-regency with Tethmosis I. 
Not much later, in his twenty-second year, Tethmosis III. is 
reigning alone in full vigour. While she lived, the personality 
of the queen secured the devotion of her servants and held all 
ambitions in check. Not long after her death there was a violent 
reaction. Prejudice against the rule of a woman, particularly 
one who had made her name and figure so conspicuous, was 
probably the cause of this outbreak, and perhaps sought justifica- 
tion in the fact that, however complete was her right, she had 
in some degree usurped a place to which her stepson (who was 
also her nephew) had been appointed. Her cartouches began to 
be defaced or her monuments hidden up by other buildings, 
and the same rage pursued some of her most faithful servants in 
their tombs. But the beauty of the work seems to have 
restrained the hand of the destroyer. Then came the religious 
fanaticism of Akhenaton, mutilating all figures of Ammon and 
all inscriptions containing his name; this made havoc of the 
exquisite monuments of Hatshepsut; and the restorers of the 
XlXth Dynasty, refusing to recognize the legitimacy of the 
queen, had no scruples in replacing her names by those of the 
associate kings Tethmosis I., II. or III. These acts of vandalism 
took place throughout Egypt, but in the distant mines of Sinai 
the cartouches of Hatshepsut are untouched. In the royal lists 
of Seti I. and Rameses II. Hatshepsut has no place, nor is her 
reign referred to on any later monument. 1 

The immense energy of Tethmosis III. now found its outlet 
in war. Syria had revolted, perhaps on Hatshepsut's death, 
but by his twenty-second year the monarch was ready 
to lead his army against the rebels. The revolt , headed rethmosls 
by the city of Kadesh on the Orontes, embraced the ///. 
whole of western Syria. The movements of Tethmosis 
in this first campaign, including a battle with the Syrian chariots 
and infantry at Megiddo and the capture of that city, were 
chronicled from day to day, and an extract from this chronicle 
is engraved on the walls of the sanctuary of Karnak, together 
with a brief record of the subsequent expeditions. In a series 

1 The history of Hatshepsut has been very obscure, and the 
mutilations of her cartouches have been variously accounted for. 
Recent discoveries by M. Legrain at Karnak and Prof. Petrie at 
Sinai have limited the field of conjecture. The writer has followed 
M. Naville's guidance in his biography of the queen (in T. M. Davis, 
The Tomb of HatshopsM, London, 1906, pp. 1 et seq.)> made with 
very full knowledge of the complicated data. 




of five carefully planned campaigns he consolidated his conquests 
in southern Syria and secured the ports of Phoenicia (q.v.). 
Kadesh fell in the sixth campaign. In the next year Tethmosis 
revisited the Phoenician ports, chastised the rebellious and 
received the tribute of Syria, all the while preparing for further 
advance, which did not take place until another year had gone 
by. Then, in the thirty-third year of his reign, he marched 
through Kadesh, fought his way to Carchemish, defeated the 
forces that opposed him there and crossed over the Euphrates 
into the territory of the king of Mitanni. He set up a tablet by 
the side of that of Tethmosis I. and turned southward, following 
the river as far as Niy. Here he stayed to hunt a herd of 120 
elephants, and then, marching westwards, received the tribute 
of Naharina and gifts from the Hittites in Asia Minor and from 
the king of Babylon. In all he fought seventeen campaigns in 
Syria until the spirit of revolt was entirely crushed in a second 
capture of Kadesh. The wars in Libya and Ethiopia were of 
less moment. In the intervals of war Tethmosis III. proved to 
be a wonderfully efficient administrator, with his eye on every 
corner of his dominions. The Syrian expeditions occupied six 
months in most of his best years, but the remaining time was 
spent in activity at home, repressing robbery and injustice, 
rebuilding and adorning temples with the labour of . his 
captives and the plunder and tribute of conquered cities, or 
designing with his own hand the gorgeous sacred vessels of the 
sanctuary of Amnion. In his later years some expeditions took 
place into Nubia. Tethmosis died in the fifty-fourth year of his 
reign. His mummy, found in the cachette at Deir el Bahri, is 
said to be that of a very old man. He was the greatest Pharaoh 
in the New Empire, if not in all Egyptian history. 

Tethmosis III. was succeeded by his son Amenophis II., whom 
he had associated on the throne at the end of his reign. One 
of the first acts of the new king was to lead an army into Syria, 
where revolt was again rife; he reached and perhaps crossed the 
Euphrates and returned home to Thebes with seven captive 
kings of Tikhsi and much spoil. The kings he sacrificed to 
Ammon and hanged six bodies on the walls, while the seventh 
was carried south to Napata and there exposed as a terror to the 
Ethiopians. Amenophis reigned twenty-six years and left his 
throne to his son Tethmosis IV., who is best remembered by a 
granite tablet recording his clearance of the Great Sphinx. He 
also warred in northern Syria and in Cush. His son Amenophis 
III., c. 1400 B.C., was a mighty builder, especially at Thebes, 
where his reign marks a new epoch in the history of the great 
temples, Luxor being his creation, while avenues of rams, pylons, 
&c, were added on a vast scale to Karnak. He married a certain 
Taia, who, though apparently of humble parentage, was held in 

great honour by her husband as afterwards by her son. 
n'" s Amenophis III. warred in Ethiopia, but his sway was 

long unquestioned from Napata to the Euphrates. 
Small objects with his name and that of Taia are found on the 
mainland and in the islands of Greece. Through the fortunate 
discovery of cuneiform tablets deposited by his successor in 
the archives at Tell el-Amarna, we can see how the rulers of the 
great kingdoms beyond the river, Mitanni, Assyria and even 
Babylonia, corresponded with Amenophis, gave their daughters 
to him in marriage, and congratulated themselves on having 
his friendship. The king of Cyprus too courted him; while 
within the empire the descendants of the Syrian dynasts con- 
quered by his father, having been educated in Egypt, ruled 
their paternal possessions as the abject slaves of Pharaoh. A 
constant stream of tribute poured into Egypt, sufficient to defray 
the cost of all the splendid works that were executed. Amenophis 
caused a series of large scarabs unique in their kind to be engraved 
with the name and parentage of his queen Taia, followed by 
varying texts commemorating like medals the boundaries of 
his kingdom, his secondary marriage with Gilukhipa, daughter 
of the king of Mitanni, the formation of a sacred lake at Thebes, 
a great hunt of wild cattle, and the number of lions the king si :w 
in the first ten years of his reign. The colossi known to the 
Greeks by the name of the Homeric hero Memnon, which look 
over the western plain of Thebes, represent this king and were 

placed before the entrance of his funerary temple, the rest of 
which has disappeared. His palace lay farther south on the west 
bank, built of crude brick covered with painted stucco. Towards 
the end of his reign of thirty-six years, Syria was invaded by the 
Hittites from the north and the people called the Khabiri from 
the eastern desert; some of the kinglets conspired with the 
invaders to overthrow the Egyptian power, while those who 
remained loyal sent alarming reports to their sovereign. 

Amenophis IV., son of Amenophis III. and Taia, was perhaps 
the most remarkable character in the long line of the Pharaohs. 
He was a religious fanatic, who had probably been high 
priest of the sun-god at Heliopolis, and had come to lv e op 
view the sun as the visible source of life, creation, 
growth and activity, whose power was demonstrated in foreign 
lands almost as clearly as in Egypt. Thrusting aside all the 
multitudinous deities of Egypt and all the mythology even of 
Heliopolis, he devoted himself to the cult of the visible sun-disk, 
applying to it as its chief name the hitherto rare word Aton, 
meaning "sun "; the traditional divine name Harakht (Horus 
of the horizon), given to the hawk-headed sun-god of Heliopolis, 
was however allowed to subsist and a temple was built at Karnak 
to this god. The worship of the other gods was officially recog- 
nized until his fifth year, but then a sweeping reform was initiated 
by which apparently the new cult alone was permitted. Of the 
old deities Ammon represented by far the wealthiest and most 
powerful interests, and against this long favoured deity the 
Pharaoh hurled himself with fury. He changed his own name 
from Amenhotp, " Ammon is satisfied," to Akhenaton, " pious 
to Aton," erased the name and figure of Ammon from the 
monuments, even where it occurred as part of his own father's 
name, abandoned Thebes, the magnificent city of Ammon, and 
built a new capital at El Amarna in the plain of Hermopolis, on 
a virgin site upon the edge of the desert. This with a large area 
around he dedicated to Aton in the sixth year, while splendid 
temples, palaces, houses and tombs for his god, for himself and 
for his courtiers were rising around him; apparently also this 
" son of Aton " swore an oath never to pass beyond the 
boundaries of Aton's special domain. There are signs also that the 
polytheistic word " gods " was obliterated on many of the monu- 
ments, but other divine names, though almost entirely excluded 
from Akhenaton's work, were left untouched where they already 
existed. In all local temples the worship of Aton was instituted. 
The confiscated revenues of Ammon and the tribute from Syria 
and Cush provided ample means for adorning Ekhaton (Akhe- 
taton), " the horizon of Aton," the new capital, and for richly 
rewarding those who adopted the Aton teaching fervently. 
But meanwhile the political needs of the empire were neglected; 
the dangers which threatened it at the end of the reign of 
Amenophis III. were never properly met; the dynasts in Syria 
were at war amongst themselves, intriguing with the great Hittite 
advance and with the Khabiri invaders. Those who relied on 
Pharaoh and remained loyal as their fathers had done sent letter 
after letter appealing for aid against their foes. But though a 
general was despatched with some troops, he seems to have done 
more harm than good in misjudging the quarrels. At length the 
tone of the letters becomes one of despair, in which flight to Egypt 
appears the only resource left for the adherents of the Egyptian 
cause. Before the end of the reign Egyptian rule in Syria had 
probably ceased altogether. Akhenaton died in or about the 
seventeenth year of his reign, c. 1350 B.C. He had a family of 
daughters, who appeared constantly with him in all ceremonies, 
but no son. Two sons-in-law followed him with brief reigns; 
but the second, Tutenkhaton, soon changed his name to Tuten- 
khamun, and, without abandoning Ekhaton entirely, began to 
restore to Karnak its ancient splendour, with new monuments 
dedicated to Ammon. Akhenaton's reform had not reached 
deep amongst the masses of the population; they probably 
retained all their old religious customs and superstitions, while 
the priesthoods throughout the country must have been fiercely 
opposed to the heretic's work, even if silenced during his lifetime 
by force and bribes. One more adherent of his named Ay, a 
priest, ruled for a short time, but now Aton was only one of many 




gods. At length a general named Harmahib, who had served 
under Akhenaton,came to the throne as a whole-hearted supporter 
of the old religion; soon Aton and his royal following suffered 
the fate that they had imposed upon Ammon; their monuments 
were destroyed and their names and figures erased, while those 
of Ammon were restored. From the time of Rameses II. onwards 
the years of the reigns of the heretics were counted to Harmahib, 
and Akhenaton was described as " that criminal of Akhetaton." 
Harmahib had to bring order as a practical man into the long- 
neglected administration of the country and to suppress the 
extortions of the official classes by severe measures. His laws to 
this end were engraved on a great stela in the temple of Karnak, 
of which sufficient remains to bear witness to his high aims, 
while the prosperity of the succeeding reigns shows how well 
he realized the necessities of the state. He probably began also to 
re-establish the prestige of Egypt by military expeditions in the 
surrounding countries. 

Harmahib appears to have legitimated his rule by marriage 
to a royal princess, but it is probable that Rameses I., who suc- 
ceeded as founder of the XlXth Dynasty, was not 
Dynasty, closely related to him. Rameses in his brief reign of 
two years planned and began the great colonnaded 
hall of Karnak, proving that he was a man of great ideas, though 
probably too old to carry them out; this task he left to his son 
Seti I., who reigned one year with his father and on the latter's 
death was ready at once to subdue the Bedouin Shasu, who had 
invaded Palestine and withheld all tribute. This task was quickly 
accomplished and Seti pushed onward to the Lebanon. Here 
cedars were felled for him by the Syrian princes, and the Phoe- 
nicians paid homage before he returned home in triumph. The 
Libyans had also to be dealt with, and afterwards Seti advanced 
again through Palestine, ravaged the land of the Amorites and 
came into conflict with the Hittites. The latter, however, were now 
firmly established in the Orontes valley, and a treaty with Mutallu, 
the king of Kheta, reigning far away in Cappadocia, probably 
ended the wars of Seti. In his ninth year he turned his attention 
to the gold mines in the eastern desert of Nubia and improved the 
road thither. Meanwhile the great work at Karnak projected 
by his father was going forward, and throughout Egypt the 
injuries done to the monuments by Akhenaton were thoroughly 
repaired; the erased inscriptions and figures were restored, not 
without many blunders. Seti's temple at Abydos and his 
galleried tomb in the Valley of the Tombs of the Kings stand out 
as the most splendid examples of their kind in design and in 
decoration. Rameses II. succeeded at an early age 
and reigned sixty-seven years, during which he 
finished much that was begun by Seti and filled all 
Egypt and Nubia with his own monuments, some of them beauti- 
ful, but most, necessarily entrusted to inferior workmen, of 
coarse execution. The excavation of the rock temple of Abu 
Simbel and the completion of the great hall of Karnak were his 
greatest achievements in architecture. His wars began in his 
second year, their field comprising the Nubians, the Libyans, 
the Syrians and the Hittites. In his fifth year, near Kadesh 
on the Orontes, his army was caught unprepared and divided 
by a strong force of chariots of the Hittites and their allies, and 
Rameses himself was placed in the most imminent danger; but 
through his personal courage the enemy was kept at bay till 
reinforcements came up and turned the disaster into a victory. 
The incidents of this episode were a favourite subject in the sculp- 
tures of his temples, where their representation was accompanied 
by a poetical version of the affair and other explanatory inscrip- 
tions. Kadesh, however, was not captured, and after further 
contests, in his twenty-first year Rameses and the Hittite king 
Khattusil (Kheta-sar) made peace, with a defensive alliance 
against foreign aggression and internal revolt (see Hittites). 
Thanks to Winckler's discoveries, the cuneiform text of this 
treaty from Boghaz Keui can now be compared with the hiero- 
glyphic text at Karnak. In the thirty-fourth year, c. 1250 B.C., 
Khattusil with his friend or subject the king of Kode came from 
his distant capital to see the wonders of Egypt in person, bringing 
one of his daughters to be wife of the splendid Pharaoh. 


Rameses II. paid much attention to the Delta, which had been 
neglected until the days of Seti I., and resided there constantly; 
the temple of Tanis must have been greatly enlarged and adorned 
by him; a colossus of the king placed here was over 90 ft. in 
height, exceeding in scale even the greatest of the Theban colossi 
which he had erected in his mortuary temple of the Ramesseum. 
Towards the end of the long reign the vigilance and energy of 
the old king diminished. The military spirit awakened in the 
struggle with the Hyksos had again departed from the Egyptian 
nation; mercenaries from the Sudan, from Libya and from the 
northern nations supplied the armies, while foreigners settled in 
the rich lands of the Delta and harried the coasts. It was a 
time too when the movements of the nations that so frequently 
occurred in the ancient world were about to be particularly active. 
Mineptah, c. 1225 B.C., succeeding his father Rameses II., had 
to fight many battles for the preservation of- his kingdom and 
empire. Apparently most of the fighting was finished by the 
fifth year of his reign; in his mortuary temple at Thebes he set 
up a stela of that date recording a great victory over the Libyan 
immigrants and invaders, which rendered the much harried 
land of Egypt safe. The last lines picture this condition with 
the crushing of the surrounding tribes. Libya was wasted, the 
Hittites pacified, Canaan, Ashkelon (Ascalon), Gezer, Yenoam 
sacked and plundered: " Israel is desolated, his seed is not, 
Khor (Palestine) has become a widow (without protector) for 
Egypt." The Libyans are accompanied by allies whose names, 
Sherden, Shekelesh, Ekwesh, Lukku, Teresh, suggest identifica- 
tions with Sardinians, Sicels, Achaeans, Lycians and Tyrseni 
or Etruscans. The Sherden had been in the armies of 
Rameses II., and are distinguished by their remarkable helmets 
and apparently body armour of metal. The Lukku are certainly 
the same as the Lycians. Probably they were all sea-rovers 
from the shores and islands of the Mediterranean, who were 
willing to leave their ships and join the Libyans in raids on the 
rich lands of Egypt. Mineptah was one of the most unconscion- 
able usurpers of the monuments of his predecessors, including 
those of his own father, who, it must be admitted, had set him 
the example. The coarse cutting of his cartouches contrasts with 
the splendid finish of the Middle Kingdom work which they 
disfigure. It may be questioned whether it was due to a wave 
of enthusiasm amongst the priests and people, leading them to 
rededicate the monuments in the name of their deliverer, or a 
somewhat insane desire of the king to perpetuate his own memory 
in a singularly unfortunate manner. Mineptah, the thirteenth 
son in the huge family of Rameses, must have been old when he 
ascended the throne; after his first years of reign his energies 
gave way, and he was followed by a quick succession of inglorious 
rulers, Seti II., the queen Tuosri, Amenmesse, Siptah; the names 
of the last two were erased from their monuments. 

A great papyrus written after the death of Rameses HI. and 
recording his gifts to the temples briefly reviews the conditions 
of these troublous times. " The land of Egypt was 
in the hands of chiefs and rulers of towns, great and Dynasty. 
small slaying each other; afterwards a certain Syrian 
made himself chief; he made the whole land tributary before 
him; he united his companions and plundered their property 
(i.e. of the other chiefs). They made the gods like men, and no 
offerings were presented in the temples. But when the gods 
inclined themselves to peace . . . they established their son 
Setenkhot (Setnekht) to be ruler of every land." Of the Syrian 
occupation we know nothing further. Setenkhot, c. 1200 B.C., 
had a very short reign and was not counted as legitimate, but 
he established a lasting dynasty (probably by conciliating the 
priesthood). He was father of Rameses III., who revived the 
glories of the empire. The dangers that menaced Egypt now 
were similar to those which Mineptah had to meet at his accession. 
Again the Libyans and the " peoples of the sea " were acting 
in concert. The latter now comprised Peleset (the Cretans, 
ancestors of the Philistines), Thekel, Shekelesh, Denyen 
(Danaoi?) and Weshesh; they had invaded Syria from Asis 
Minor, reaching the Euphrates, destroying the Hittite cities 
and progressing southwards, while their ships gathered plunder 




from the coasts of the Delta. This fleet joined the Libyan 
invaders, but was overthrown with heavy loss by the Egyptians, 
in whose ranks there actually served many Sherden and Kehaka, 
Sardinian and Libyan mercenaries. Egypt itself was thus clear 
of enemies; but the chariots and warriors of the Philistines and 
their associates were advancing through Syria, their families 
and goods following in ox-carts, and their ships accompanying 
them along the shore. Rameses led out his army and fleet 
against them and struck them so decisive a blow that the migrat- 
ing swarm submitted to his rule and paid him tribute. In his 
eleventh year another Libyan invasion had to be met, and his 
suzerainty in Palestine forcibly asserted. His vigour was equal 
to all these emergencies and the later years of his reign were 
spent in peace. Rameses III., however, was not a great ruler. 
He was possessed by the spirit of decadence, imitative rather 
than originating. • It is evident that Rameses II. was the model 
to which he endeavoured to conform, and he did not attempt 
to preserve himself from the weakening influences of priestcraft. 
To the temples he not only restored the property which had been 
given to them by former kings, but he also added greatly to their 
wealth; the Theban Ammon naturally received by far the 
greatest share, more than those of all the other gods together. 
The land held in the name of different deities is estimated at 
about 15% of the whole of Egypt; various temples of Ammon 
owned two-thirds of this, Re of Heliopolis and Ptah of Memphis 
being the next in wealth. His palace was at Medinet Habu on 
the west bank of Thebes in the south quarter; and here he 
built a great temple to Ammon, adorned with scenes from his 
victories and richly provided with divine offerings. Although 
Egypt probably was prosperous on the whole, there was un- 
doubtedly great distress amongst certain portions of the popula- 
tion. We read in a papyrus of a strike of starving labourers in 
the Theban necropolis who would not work until corn was given 
to them, and apparently the government storehouse was empty 
at the time, perhaps in consequence of a bad Nile. Shortly before 
the death of the old king a plot in the harem to assassinate him, 
and apparently to place one of his sons on the throne, was dis- 
covered and its investigation ordered, leading after his death to 
the condemnation of many high-placed men and women. Nine 
kings of the name of Rameses now followed each other ingloriously 
in the space of about eighty years to the end of the XXth 
Dynasty, the power of the high priests of Ammon ever growing 
at their expense. At this time the Theban necropolis was being 
more systematically robbed than ever before. Under Rameses 
IX. an investigation took place which showed that one of the 
royal tombs before the western cliffs had been completely 
ransacked and the mummies burnt. Three years later the 
Valley of the Tombs of the Kings was attacked and the sepulchres 
of Seti I. and Rameses II. were robbed. 

The authority of the last king of the XXth Dynasty, 
Rameses XII., was shadowy. Hrihor, the high priest in his 
reign, gradually gathered into his own hands all real 
Deltaic power, and succeeded him at Thebes, c. noo B.C., 
Dynasties; while a prince at Tanis named Smendes (Esbent£ti) 
ub ^ a " founded a separate dynasty in the Delta (Dynasty 
^ ".' XXL). From this period dates a remarkable papyrus 
containing the report of an envoy named Unamun, sent to Syria 
by Hrihori to obtain cedar timber from Byblus. He took with 
him an image of Ammon to bestow life and health on the prince 
of Byblus, but apparently no other provision for the journey 
or for the negotiations beyond a letter of recommendation to 
Smendes and a little gold and silver. Smendes had trading ships 
in the Phoenician ports, but even his influence was not greater 
than that of other commercial or pirate centres, while Hrihor was 
of no account except in so far as he might pay well for the cedar 
wood he required. Unamun was robbed on the voyage, the prince 
of Byblus rebuffed him, and when at last the latter agreed to 
provide the timber it was only in exchange for substantial gifts 
hastily sent for from Egypt (including rolls of papyrus) and the 
promise of more to follow. The prince, however, seems to have 
acknowledged to some extent the divinity of Ammon and the 
debt owed by Phoenicia to Egyptian culture, and pitied the many 

misfortunes of Unamun. The narrative shows the feebleness of 
Egypt abroad. The Tanite line of kings generally had the over- 
lordship of the high priests of Thebes; the descendants of Hrihor, 
however, sometimes by marriage with princesses of the other line, 
could assume cartouches and royal titles, and in some cases 
perhaps ruled the whole of Egypt. Ethiopia may have been 
ruled with the Thebais, but the records of the time are very 
scanty. Syria was wholly lost to Egypt. The mummies from 
the despoiled tombs of the kings were the object of much anxious 
care to the kings of this dynasty; after being removed from one 
tomb to another, they were finally deposited in a shaft near the 
temple of Deir el Bahri, where they remained for nearly three 
thousand years, until the demand for antiquities at last brought 
the plunderer once more to their hiding-place; eventually they 
were all secured for the Cairo museum, where they may now be 

Libyan soldiers had long been employed in the army, and . 
their military chiefs settled in the large towns and acquired 
wealth and power, while the native rulers grew weaker and weaker. 
The Tanite dynasty may have risen from a Libyan stock, though 
there is nothing to prove it; the XXIInd Dynasty are clearly 
from their names of foreign extraction, and their genealogy in- 
dicates distinctly a Libyan military origin in a family of rulers of 
Heracleopolis Magna, in Middle Egypt. Sheshonk (Shishak) I., 
the founder of the dynasty, c. 950 B.C., seems to have fixed his 
residence at Bubastis in the Delta, and his son married the 
daughter of the last king of the Tanite dynasty. ' Heracleopolis 
seems henceforth for several centuries to have been capital of 
Middle Egypt, which was considered as a more or less distinct 
province. Sheshonk secured Thebes, making one of his sons 
high priest of Ammon, and whereas Solomon appears to have 
dealt with a king of Egypt on something like an equal footing, 
Sheshonk re-established Egyptian rule in Palestine and Nubia, 
and his expedition in the fifth year of Rehoboam subdued Israel 
as well as Judah, to judge by the list of city names which he 
inscribed on the wall of the temple of Karnak. Osorkon I. 
inherited a prosperous kingdom from his father, but no further 
progress was made. It required a strong hand to curb the 
Libyan chieftains, and divisions soon began to show themselves 
in the kingdom. The XXIInd Dynasty lasted through many 
generations; but there were rival kings, and M. Legrain thinks 
that he has proof that the XXIIIrd Dynasty was contempor- 
aneous with the end of the XXIInd. The kings of the XXIIIrd 
Dynasty had little hold upon the subject princes, who spent the 
resources of the country in feuds amongst themselves. A native 
kingdom had meanwhile been established in Ethiopia. Our 
first knowledge of it is at this moment, when the Ethiopian king 
Pankhi already held the Thebais. The energetic prince of Sais, 
Tefnakht, followed by most of the princes of the Delta, subdued 
most of Middle Egypt, and by uniting these forces threatened 
the Ethiopian border. Heracleopolis Magna, however, with its 
petty king Pefteuaubasti, held out against Tefnakht, and 
Pankhi coming to its aid not only drove Tefnakht out of Middle 
Egypt, but also captured Memphis and received the submission 
of the princes and chiefs; in all these included four " kings " 
and fourteen other chiefs. According to Diodorus the Ethiopian 
state was theocratic, ruled through the 1 "ing by the priests of 
Ammon. The account is probably exaggerated; but even in 
Pankhi's record the piety of the king, especially towards Ammon, 
is very marked. 

The XXIVth Dynasty consisted of a single Saite king named 
Bocchoris (Bekerrinf), son of Tefnachthus, apparently the above 
Tefnakht. Another Ethiopian invader, Shabako 
(Sabacon), is said to have burnt Bocchoris alive. The Dynasty? 
Ethiopian rule of the XXVth Dynasty was now firmly 
established, and the resources of the two countries together 
might have been employed in conquest in Syria and Phoenicia; 
but at this very time the Assyrian empire, risen to the highest 
pitch of military greatness, began to menace Egypt. The 
Ethiopian could do no more than encourage or support the 
Syrians in their fight for freedom against Sargon and Sennacherib. 
Shabako was followed by Shebitku and Shebitku by Tirhaka 




(Tahrak, Taracos). Tirhaka was energetic in opposing the 
Assyrian advance, but in 670 B.C. Esarhaddon defeated his 
army on the border of Egypt, captured Memphis with the royaf 
harem and took great spoil. The Egyptian resistance to the 
Assyrians was probably only half-hearted; in the north especi- 
ally there must have been a strong party against the Ethiopian 
rule. Tirhaka laboured to propitiate the north country, and 
probably rendered the Ethiopian rule acceptable throughout 
Egypt. Notwithstanding, the Assyrian king entrusted the 
government and collection of tribute to the native chiefs; twenty 
princes in all are enumerated in the records, including one 
Assyrian to hold the key of Egypt at Pelusium. Scarcely had 
Esarhaddon withdrawn before Tirhaka returned from his refuge 
in the south and the Assyrian garrisons were massacred. Esar- 
haddon promptly prepared a second expedition, but died on the 
way to Egypt in 668 B.C. ; his son Assur-bani-pal sent it forward, 
routed Tirhaka and reinstated the governors. At the head of 
these was Necho (Niku), king of Sais and Memphis, father of 
Psammetichus, the founder of the XXVIth Dynasty. We next 
hear that correspondence with Tirhaka was intercepted, and 
that Necho, together with Pekrur of Psapt (at the entrance to 
the Wadi Tumilat) and the Assyrian governor of Pelusium, was 
taken to Nineveh in chains to answer the charge of treason. 
Whatever may have occurred, it was deemed politic to send 
Necho back loaded with honours and surrounded by a retinue 
of Assyrian officials. Upper Egypt, however, was loyal to Tirhaka, 
and even at Memphis the burial of an Apis bull was dated by 
the priests as in his reign. Immediately afterwards he died. 
His nephew Tandamane, received by the Upper country with 
acclamations, besieged and captured Memphis, Necho being 
probably slain in the encounter. But in 661 (?) Assur-bani-pal 
drove the Ethiopian out of Lower Egypt, pursued him up the 
Nile and sacked Thebes. This was the last and most tremendous 
visitation of the Assyrian scourge. 

Psammetichus (Psammetk), 664-610 B.C., the son of Necho, 
succeeded his father as a vassal of Assyria in his possessions of 
Memphis and Sais, allied himself with Gyges, king of 
Dyaasty. Lydia, and aided by Ionian and Carian mercenaries, 
extended and consolidated his power. 1 By the ninth 
year of his reign he was in full possession of Thebes. Assur- 
bani-pal's energies throughout this crisis were entirely occupied 
with revolts nearer home, in Babylon, Elam and Arabia. The 
Assyrian arms again triumphed everywhere, but at the cost of 
complete exhaustion. Under the firm and wise rule of Psam- 
metichus, Egypt recovered its prosperity after the terrible losses 
inflicted by internal wars and the decade of Assyrian invasions. 
The revenue went up by leaps and bounds. Psammetichus 
guarded the frontiers of Egypt with three strong garrisons, 
placing the Ionian and Carian mercenaries especially at the 
Pelusiac Daphnae in the N.E., from which quarter the most 
formidable enemy was likely to appear. The Assyrians did not 
move against him, but a great Scythian horde, destroying all 
before it in its southward advance, is said by Herodotus to 
have been turned back by presents and entreaties. Diplomacy 
backed up by vigorous preparations may have deterred the 
Scythians from the dangerous enterprise of crossing the desert 
to Egypt. Before his death Psammetichus had advanced into 
southern Palestine and captured Azotus. 

When Psammetichus began to reign the situation of Egypt 
was very different from what it had been under the Empire. 
The development of trade in the Mediterranean and contact 
with new peoples and new civilizations in peace and war had 
given birth to new ideas among the Egyptians and at the same 
time to a loss of confidence in their own powers. The Theban 
supremacy was gone and the Delta was now the wealthy and 
progressive part of Egypt; piety increased amongst the masses, 
unenterprising and unwarlike, but proud of their illustrious 
antiquity. Thebes and Ammon and the traditions of the Empire 
savoured too much now of the Ethiopian; the priests of/ the 
Memphite and Deltaic dynasty thereupon turned deliberately 

1 This, it may be remarked, is the time vaguely represented by 
the Dodecarchy of Herodotus. 

for their models to the times of the ancient supremacy of 
Memphis, and the sculptures and texts on tomb and temple had 
to conform as closely as possible to those of the Old Kingdom. 
In other than religious matters, however, the Egyptians were 
inventing and perhaps borrowing. To enumerate a few examples 
of this which are already definitely known: we find that the 
forms of legal and business documents became more precise; 
the mechanical arts of casting in bronze on a core and of moulding 
figures and pottery were brought to the highest pitch of excel- 
lence; and portraiture in the round on its highest plane was better 
than ever before and admirably lifelike, revealing careful study 
of the external anatomy of the individual. 

Psammetichus died in the fifty-fourth year of his reign and 
was succeeded by his son Necho, 610-594 B.C. Taking advantage 
of the helpless state of the Assyrians, whose capital was assailed 
by the Medes and the Babylonians, the new Pharaoh prepared 
an expedition to recover the ancient possessions of the Empire 
in Syria. Josiah alone, faithful to the king of Assyria, opposed 
him with his feeble force at Megiddo and was easily overcome 
and slain. Necho went forward to the Euphrates, put the land 
to tribute, and, in the case of Judah at any rate, filled the throne 
with his own nominee (see Jehoiakim). The fall of Nineveh 
and the division of the spoil gave to Nabopolasser, king of 
Babylon, the inheritance of the Assyrians in the west, and he at 
once despatched his son Nebuchadrezzar to fight Necho. The 
Babylonian and Egyptian forces met at Carchemish (605), and 
the rout of the latter was so complete that Necho relinquished 
Syria and might have lost Egypt as well had not the death of 
Nabopolasser recalled the victor to Babylon. Herodotus relates 
that in Necho's reign a Phoenician ship despatched from Egypt 
actually circumnavigated Africa, and the attempt was made 
to complete a canal through the Wadi Tumilat, which connected 
the Mediterranean and Red Seas by way of the Lower Egyptian 
Nile. (See Suez.) The next king, Psammetichus II., 594- 
589 B.C., according to one account made an expedition to Syria 
or Phoenicia, and apparently sent a mercenary force into Ethiopia 
as far as Abu Simbel. Pharaoh Hophra (Apries), 589-570 B.C., 
fomented rebellion against the Babylonian suzerainty in Judah, 
but accomplished little there. Herodotus, however, describes 
his reign as exceedingly prosperous. The mercenary troops at 
Elephantine mutinied and attempted to desert to Ethiopia, 
but were brought back and punished. Later, however, a dis- 
astrous expedition sent to aid the Libyans against the Greek 
colony of Cyrene roused the suspicion and anger of the native 
soldiery at favours shown to the mercenaries, who of course had 
taken no part in it. Amasis (Ahmosi) II. was chosen king by 
the former (570-525 B.C.), and his swarm of adherents overcame 
the Greek troops in Apries' pay (see Amasis). None the less 
Amasis employed Greeks in numbers, and cultivated the friend- 
ship of their tyrants. His rule was confined to Egypt (and 
perhaps Cyprus), but Egypt itself was very prosperous. At the 
beginning of his long reign of forty-four years he was threatened 
by Nebuchadrezzar; later he joined the league against Cyrus 
and saw with alarm the fall of his old enemy. A few months 
after his death, 525 B.C., the invading host of the Persians led 
by Cambyses reached Egypt and dethroned his son Psam- 
metichus III. 

Cambyses at first conciliated the Egyptians and respected 
their religion; but, perhaps after the failure of his expedition 
into Ethiopia, he entirely changed his policy, and his rh 
memory was generally execrated. He left Egypt so Persian 
completely crushed that the subsequent usurpation period, 
of the Persian throne was marked by no revolt in that xxvuth 
quarter. Darius, 521-486 B.C., proved himself a 
beneficent ruler, and in a visit to Egypt displayed his considera- 
tion for the religion of the country. In the Great Oasis he 
built a temple to Ammon. The annual tribute imposed on the 
satrapy of Egypt and Cyrene was heavy, but it was probably 
raised with ease. The canal from the Nile to the Red Sea was 
completed or repaired, and commerce flourished. Documents 
dated in the thirty-fourth and thirty-fifth years of Darius are 
not uncommon, but apparently at the very end of his reign, 




some years after the disaster of Marathon, Egypt was induced 
to rebel. Xerxes, 486-467 B.C., who put down the revolt with 
severity, and his successor Artaxerxes, 466-425 B.C., like 
Cambyses, were hateful to the Egyptians. The disorders which 
marked the accession of Artaxerxes gave Egypt another oppor- 
tunity to rebel. Their leaders were Inaros the Libyan of Marea 
and the Egyptian Amyrtaeus. Aided by an Athenian force, 
Inaros slew the satrap Achaemenes at the battle of Papremis 
and destroyed his army; but the garrison of Memphis held out. 
and a fresh host from Persia raised the siege and in turn besieged 
the Greek and Egyptian forces on the island of Papremis. At 
last, after two years, having diverted the river from its channel, 
they captured and burnt the Athenian ships and quickly ended 
the rebellion. The reigns of Xerxes II. and Darius II. are marked 
by no recorded incident in Egypt until a successful revolt about 
405 B.C. interrupted the Persian domination. 

Monuments of the Persian rule in Egypt are exceedingly 
scanty. The inscriptions of Pefteuauneit, priest of Neith at 
Sais, and from his position the native authority who was most 
likely to be consulted by Cambyses and Darius, tells of his 
relations with these two kings. For the following reigns Egyptian 
documents hardly exist, but some papyri written in Aramaic have 
been found at Elephantine and at Memphis. Those from the 
former locality show that a colony of Jews with a temple 
dedicated to Yahweh (Jehovah) had established themselves at 
that garrison and trading post (see Assuan). Herodotus visited 
Egypt in the reign of Artaxerxes, about 440 B.C. His description 
of Egypt, partly founded on Hecataeus, who had been there 
about fifty years earlier, is the chief source of information for the 
history of the Saite kings and for the manners of the times, 
but his statements prove to be far from correct when they can 
be checked by the scanty native evidence. (F. Ll. G.) 

Amyrtaeus (Amnertais) of Sais, perhaps a son of Pausiris and 
grandson of the earlier Amyrtaeus, revolted from Darius II. 
c. 405 B.C., and Egypt regained its independence for 
xxvfu- 3 aD0U t sixty years. The next king Nefeuret 
xxxi.' (Nepherites I.) was a Mendesian and founded the 
XXIXth Dynasty. After Hakor and Nefeuret II. the 
sovereignty passed to Dynasty XXX., the last native Egyptian 
line. Monuments of all these kings are known, and art flourished 
particularly under the MendesiankingsNekhtharheb(Nectanebes 
or Nectanebus I.) and Nekhtnebf (Nectanebes II.). The former 
came to the throne when a Persian invasion was imminent, 
378 B.C. Hakor had already formed a powerful army, largely 
composed of Greek mercenaries. This army Nekhtharheb 
entrusted to the Athenian Chabrias. The Persians, however, 
succeeded in causing his recall and in gaining the services of 
his fellow-countryman Iphicrates. The invading army consisted 
of 200,000 barbarians under Pharnabazus and 20,000 Greeks 
under Iphicrates. After the Egyptians had experienced a 
reverse, Iphicrates counselled an immediate advance on Memphis. 
His advice was not followed by Pharnabazus; the Egyptian 
king collected his forces and won a pitched battle near Mendes. 
Pharnabazus retreated and Egypt was free. 

Nekhtharheb was succeeded by Tachos or Teos, whose short 
reign was occupied by a war with Persia, in which the king of 
Egypt secured the services of a body of Greek mercenaries under 
the Spartan king Agesilaus and a fleet under the Athenian general 
Chabrias. He entered Phoenicia with every prospect of success, 
but having offended Agesilaus he was dethroned in a military 
revolt which gave the crown to Nekhtnebf or Nectanebes II., 
the last native king of Egypt. At this moment a revolt broke 
out. The prince of Mendes almost succeeded in overthrowing 
the new king. Agesilaus defeated the rival pretender and left 
Nekhtnebf established on the throne. But the opportunity of 
a decisive blow against Persia was lost. The new king, 
Artaxerxes III. Ochus, determined to reduce Egypt. A first 
expedition was defeated by the Greek mercenaries of Nekhtnebf, 
but a second, commanded by Ochus himself, subdued Egypt 
rrith no further resistance than that of the Greek garrison of 
Pelusium. Nekhtnebf, instead of endeavouring to relieve them, 
retreated to Memphis and fled thence to Ethiopia, 340 (?) B.C. 

Thus miserably fell the monarchy of the Pharaohs, after an 
unexampled duration of 3000 years, or as some think far longer. 
•More than 2000 years have since passed, and though Egypt has 
from time to time been independent, not one native prince has 
sat on the throne of the Pharaohs. " There shall be no more a 
prince of the land of Egypt " (Ezek. xxx. 13) was prophesied 
in the days of Apries as the final state of the land. 

Ochus treated his conquest barbarously. From this brief 
re-establishment of Persian dominion (counted by Manetho as 
Dynasty XXXI.) no document survives except one papyrus that 
appears to be dated in the reign of Darius III. 

See J. H. Breasted, A History of Egypt from the Earliest Times to 
the Persian Conquest (New York and London, 1905) ; A History of the 
Ancient Egyptians (New York and London, 1908) ; Ancient Records 
of Egypt: Historical Documents from the Earliest Times to the Persian 
Conquest, collected, edited and translated (5 vols., Chicago, 1906-1907) ; 
W. M. F. Petrie, A History of Egypt (from the earliest times to the 
XXXth Dynasty) (3 vols., London, 1899-1905); E. A. W. Budge, 
A History of Egypt, vols, i-vii. (London, 1902) ; G. Maspero, Hisloire 
ancienne des peuples de V orient (6th ed., 1904), The Dawn of Civiliza- 
tion, The Struggle of the Nations, The Passing of the Empires (London, 
1904, &c); P. E. Newberry and J. Garstang, A Short History of 
Ancient Egypt (London, 1904) ; G. Steindorff, Die Bliitezeit des (Dyn. XVIII.) (Bielefeld and Leipzig, 1900); 
H. Winckler, The Tell el Amarna Letters (Berlin, London and New 
York, 18 '- 

The Conquest by Alexander. — When, in 332 B.C., after the 
battle of Issus, Alexander entered Egypt, he was welcomed as 
a deliverer. The Persian governor had not forces enough to 
oppose him, and he nowhere experienced even the show of 
resistance. He visited Memphis, founded Alexandria, and went 
on pilgrimage to the oracle of Ammon (Oasis of Siwa). The god 
declared him to be his son, renewing thus an old Egyptian con- 
vention or belief; Olympias was supposed to have been in 
converse with Ammon, even as the mothers of Hatshepsut and 
Amenophis III. are represented in the inscriptions of the Theban 
temples to have received the divine essence. At this stage of his 
career the treasure and tribute of Egypt were of great importance 
to the Macedonian conqueror. He conciliated the inhabitants 
by the respect which he showed for their religion; he organized 
the government of the natives under two officers, who must have 
been already known to them (of these Petisis, an Egyptian, soon 
resigned his share into the charge of his colleague Doloaspis, 
who bears a Persian name.) But Alexander designed his Greek 
foundation of Alexandria to be the capital, and entrusted the 
taxation of Egypt and the control of its army and navy to Greeks. 
Early in 331 B.C. he was ready to depart, and led his forces away 
to Phoenicia. A granite gateway to the temple of Khnum at 
Elephantine bears his name in hieroglyphic, and demotic docu- 
ments are found dated in his reign. 

The Ptolemaic Period. — On the division of Alexander's 
dominions in 323 B.C., Egypt fell to Ptolemy the son of Lagus, 
the founder of the' Ptolemaic dynasty (see Ptolemies). Under 
these rulers the rich kingdom was heavily taxed to supply the 
sinews of war and to support every kind of lavish expenditure. 
Officials, and the higher ones were nearly all Greeks, were legion, 
but the whole system was so judiciously worked that there was 
little discontent amongst the patient peasantry. During the 
reign of Philadelphus the land gained from the bed of the lake 
of Moeris was assigned to veteran soldiers; the great armies 
of the Ptolemies were rewarded or supported by grants of farm 
lands, and men of Macedonian, Greek and Hellenistic extraction 
were planted in colonies and garrisons or settled themselves 
in the villages throughout the country. Upper Egypt, farthest! 
from the centre of government, was probably least affected by 
the new influences, though the first Ptolemy established the 
Greek colony of Ptolemais to be its capital. Intermarriages, 
however, gradually had their effect; after the revolt of the 
natives in the reign of Ptolemy V., we find the Greek and 
Egyptian elements closely intermingled. Ptolemy I. had 
established the cult of the Memphite Serapis in a Graeco- 
Egyptian form, affording a common ground for native and 
Hellenistic worshippers. The greater number of the temples 
to the native deities in Upper Egypt and in Nubia (to 50 m. south 




of the Cataract, within the Dodecaschoenus) were built under 
the Ptolemies. No serious effort was made to extend the Ptole- 
maic rule into Ethiopia, and Ergamenes, the Hellenizing king of 
Ethiopia, was evidently in alliance with Philopator; in the 
next reign two native kings, probably supported by Ethiopia, 
reigned in succession at Thebes. That famous city lost all except 
its religious importance under the Ptolemies; after the " de- 
struction " or dismantling by Lathyrus it formed only a series 
of villages. The population of Egypt in the time of Ptolemy I. 
is put at 7,000,000 by Diodorus, who also says that it was greater 
then than it ever was before; at the end of the dynasty, in his 
own day, it was not much less though somewhat diminished. 
Civil wars and revolts must have greatly injured both Upper 
and Lower Egypt. It is remarkable that, while the building 
and decoration of temples continued in the reigns of Ptolemy 
Auletes and the later Ptolemies and Cleopatra, papyri of those 
times whether Greek or Egyptian are scarcely to be found. 

The Roman Period. — In 30 B.C. Augustus took Egypt as the 
prize of conquest. He treated it as a part of his personal domain, 
free from any interference by the senate. In the main lines 
the' Ptolemaic organization was preserved, but Romans were 
gradually introduced into the highest offices. On Egypt Rome 
depended for its supplies of corn; entrenched there, a revolting 
general would be difficult to attack, and by simply holding back 
the grain ships could threaten Rome with starvation. No senator 
therefore was permitted to take office or even to set foot in the 
country without the emperor's special leave, and by way of pre- 
caution the highest position, that of prefect, was filled by a 
Roman of equestrian rank only. As the representative of the 
emperor, this officer assumed the place occupied by the king 
under the old order, except that his power was limited by the 
right of appeal to Caesar. The first prefect, Cornelius Gallus, 
tamed the natives of Upper Egypt to the new yoke by force of 
arms, and meeting ambassadors from Ethiopia at Philae, estab- 
lished a nominal protectorate of Rome over the frontier district, 
which had been abandoned by the later Ptolemies. The third 
prefect, Gaius Petronius, cleared the neglected canals for irriga- 
tion; he also repelled an invasion of the Ethiopians and pursued 
them far up the Nile, finally storming the capital of Napata. 
But no attempt was made to hold Ethiopia. In succeeding 
reigns much trouble was caused by jealousies and quarrels 
between the Greeks and the Jews, to whom Augustus had 
granted privileges as valuable as those accorded to the Greeks. 
Aiming at the spice trade, Aelius Gallus, the second prefect of 
Egypt under Augustus, had made an unsuccessful expedition 
to conquer Arabia Felix; the valuable Indian trade, however, 
was secured by Claudius for Egypt at the expense of Arabia, 
and the Red Sea routes were improved. Nero's reign especially 
marks the commencement of an era of prosperity which lasted 
about a century. Under Vespasian the Jewish temple at Leonto- 
polis in the Delta, which Onias had founded in the reign of 
Ptolemy Philometor, was closed; worse still, a great Jewish 
revolt and massacre of the Greeks in the reign of Trajan resulted, 
after a stubborn conflict of many months with the Roman army 
under Marcius Livianus Turbo, in the virtual extermination of 
the Jews in Alexandria and the loss of all their privileges. 
Hadrian, who twice visited Egypt (a.d. 130, 134), founded 
Antinoe in memory of his drowned favourite. From this reign 
onwards buildings in the Graeco-Roman style were erected 
throughout the country. A new Sothic cycle began in a.d. 139. 
Under Marcus Aurelius a revolt of the Bucolic or native troops 
recruited for home service was taken up by the whole of the 
native population and was suppressed only after several years 
of fighting. The Bucolic war caused infinite damage to the 
agriculture of the country and marks the beginning of its rapid 
decline under a burdensome taxation. The province of Africa 
was now of equal importance with Egypt for the grain supply 
of the capital. Avidius Cassius, who led the Roman forces in the 
war, usurped the purple, and was acknowledged by the armies 
of Syria and Egypt. On the approach of Marcus Aurelius, the 
adherents of Cassius slew him, and the clemency of the emperor 
restored peace. After the downfall of the house of the Antonines, 

Pescennius Niger, who commanded the forces in Egypt, was 
proclaimed emperor on the death of Pertinax (a.d. 103). Severus 
overthrew his rival (a.d. 194) and, the revolt having been a 
military one, did not punish the province; in 202 he gave a 
constitution to Alexandria and the nome capitals. In his reign 
the Christians of Egypt suffered the first of their many persecu- 
tions. When Christianity was planted in the country we do not 
know, but it must very early have gained adherents among the 
learned Jews of Alexandria, whose school of thought 
was in some respects ready to welcome it. From them u s afl " 
it rapidly passed to the Greeks. Ultimately the new 
religion spread to the Egyptians; their own creed was worn out, 
and they found in Christianity a doctrine of the future life for 
which their old belief had made them not unready; while the 
social teaching of Christianity came with special fitness to a 
subject race. The history of the Coptic Version has yet to be 
written. It presents some features of great antiquity, and, 
unlike all others, has the truly popular character of being written 
in the three dialects of the language. Side by side there grew 
up an Alexandrian church, philosophic, disputative, ambitious, 
the very centre of Christian learning, and an Egyptian church, 
ascetic, contemplative, mystical. The two at length influenced 
one another; still we can generally trace the philosophic teachers 
to a Greek origin, the mystics to an Egyptian. 

Caracalla, in revenge for an affront, massacred all the men 
capable of bearing arms in Alexandria. His granting of the 
Roman citizenship to all Egyptians in common with the other 
provincials was only to extort more taxes. Under Decius, 
a.d. 250, the Christians again suffered from persecution. When 
the empire broke up in the weak reign of Gallienus, the prefect 
Aemilianus, who took the surname Alexander or Alexandrinus, 
was made emperor by the troops at Alexandria, but was con- 
quered by the forces of Gallienus. In his brief reign of only a few 
months he had driven back an invasion of the Blemmyes. This 
predatory tribe, issuing from Nubia, was long to be the terror 
of Upper Egypt. Zenobia, queen of Palmyra, after an unsuccess- 
ful invasion, on a second attempt conquered Egypt, which she 
added to her empire, but lost it when Aurelian made war upon 
her (a.d. 272). The province was, however, unsettled, and the 
conquest of Palmyra was followed in the same year by the 
suppression of a revolt in Egypt (a.d. 273). Probus, who had 
governed Egypt for Aurelian and Tacitus, was subsequently 
chosen by the troops to succeed Tacitus, and is the first governor 
of this province who obtained the whole of the empire. He 
expelled the Blemmyes, who were dominating the whole of the 
Thebaid. Diocletian invited the Nobatae to settle in the Dodeca- 
schoenus as a barrier against their incursions, and subsidized 
both Blemmyes and Nobatae. The country, however, was still 
disturbed, and in a.d. 296 a formidable revolt broke out, led by 
Achilleus, who as emperor took the name Domitius Domitianus. 
Diocletian, finding his troops unable to determine the struggle, 
came to Egypt, captured Alexandria and put his rival to death 
(296). He then reorganized the whole province, and the well- 
known " Pompey's Pillar " was set up by the grateful and 
repentant Alexandrians to commemorate his gift to them of 
part of the corn tribute. 

The Coptic era of Diocletian or of the Martyrs dates from 
the accession of Diocletian (a.d. 284). The edict of a.d. 303 
against the Christians, and those which succeeded it, were 
rigorously carried out in Egypt, where Paganism was stil) 
strong and face to face with a strong and united church. 
Galerius, who succeeded Diocletian in the government of the 
East, implacably pursued his policy, and this great persecution 
did not end until the persecutor, perishing, it is said, of the dire 
malady of Herod and Philip II. of Spain, sent out an edict of 
toleration (a.d. 311). 

By the edict of Milan (a.d. 313), Constantine, with the agree 
ment of his colleague Licinius, acknowledged Christianity a* 
having at least equal rights withotherreligions,and whenhe gained 
sole power he wrote to all his subjects advising them, like him, 
to become Christians (a.d. 324). The Egyptian Church, hitherto 
free from schism, was now divided by a fierce controversy, 




in which we see two Greek parties, rather than a Greek and 
an Egyptian, in conflict. The council of Nicaea was called 
together (a.d. 325) to determine between the Orthodox and the 
party of the Alexandrian presbyter Arius. At that council 
the native Egyptian bishops were chiefly remarkable for their 
manly protest against enforcing celibacy on the clergy. The 
most conspicuous controversialist on the Orthodox side was the 
young Alexandrian deacon Athanasius, who returned home to be 
made archbishop of Alexandria (a.d. 326). After being four 
times expelled by the Arians, and once by the emperor Julian, 
he died, a.d. 373, at the moment when an Arian persecution 
began. So large a proportion of the population had taken 
religious vows that under Valens it became necessary to abolish 
the privilege of monks which exempted them from military 
service. The reign of Theodosius I. witnessed the overthrow 
of Arianism, and this was followed by the suppression of Pagan- 
ism, against which a final edict was promulgated a.d. 390. In 
Egypt, the year before, the temple of Serapis at Alexandria had 
been captured after much bloodshed by the Christian mob and 
turned into a church. Generally the Coptic Christians were 
content to build their churches within the ancient temples, 
plastering over or effacing the sculptures which were nearest to 
the ground and in the way of the worshippers. They do not 
seem to have been very zealous in the work of destruction; 
the native religion was already dead and they had no fear of it. 
The prosperity of the church was the sign of its decay, and before 
long we find persecution and injustice disgracing the seat of 
Athanasius. Cyril, the patriarch of Alexandria (a.d. 415), expelled 
the Jews from the capital with the aid of the mob, and by the 
murder of the beautiful philosopher Hypatia marked the lowest 
depth to which ignorant fanaticism could descend. A schism now 
produced lengthened civil war and alienated Egypt from the 
empire. The distinction between religion and politics seemed to 
be lost, and the government grew weaker and weaker. The 
system of local government by citizens had now entirely dis- 
appeared. Offices, with new Byzantine names, were now almost 
hereditary in the wealthy land-owning families. The Greek 
rulers of the Orthodox faith were unable to protect the tillers 
of the soil, and these being of the Monophysite persuasion and 
having their own church and patriarch, hated the Orthodox 
patriarch (who from the time of Justinian onwards was identical 
with the prefect) and all his following. Towards the middle of 
the 5th century, the Blemmyes, quiet since the reign of Diocletian, 
recommenced their incursions, and were even joined in them by 
the Nobatae. These tribes were twice brought to account 
severely for their misdoings, but not effectually checked. It 
was in these circumstances that Egypt fell without a conflict 
when attacked by Chosroes (a.d. 616). After ten years of 
Persian dominion the success of Heraclius restored Egypt to 
the empire, and for a time it again received a Greek governor. 
The Monophysites, who had taken advantage of the Persian 
occupation, were persecuted and their patriarch expelled. The 
Arab conquest was welcomed by the native Christians, but with 
it they ceased to be the Egyptian nation. Their language is 
still used in their churches, but it is no longer spoken, and 
its literature, which is wholly ecclesiastical, has been long 

The decline of Egypt was due to the purely military govern- 
ment of the Romans, and their subsequent alliance with the 
Greek party of Alexandria, which never represented the country. 
Under weak emperors, the rest of Egypt was exposed to the 
inroads of savages, and left to fall into a condition of barbarism. 
Ecclesiastical disputes tended to alienate both the native popula- 
tion and the Alexandrians. Thus at last the country was merely 
held by armed force, and the authority of the governor was little 
recognized beyond the capital, except where garrisons were 
stationed. There was no military spirit in a population unused 
to arms, nor any disinclination to be relieved from an arbitrary 
and persecuting rule. Thus the Moslem conquest was easy. 

Bibliography. — Hellenistic Period. — See the special articles 
Alexandria, &c, and especially Ptolemies; J. P. Mahaffy, The 
Empire of the Ptolemies (London, 1895), A History of Egypt under 

the Ptolemaic Dynasty (London, 1899) ; A. Bouche-Leclercq, Histoire 
des Lagides (4 vols., Paris, 1903- ) ; E. A. W. Budge, A History 
of Egypt, vols, vii.-viii. (London, 1902) ; J. G. Miine, A History 
of Egypt under Roman Rule (London, 1898); E. Gibbon, Decline 
and Fall of the Roman Empire (edited by J. B. Bury) (London, 1900). 
The administration and condition of Egypt under the Ptolemaic 
and Roman rules are abundantly illustrated in recently discovered 
papyri, see especially the English publications of B. P. Grenfell and 
A. S. Hunt (Memoirs of the Graeco-Roman Branch of the Egypt 
Exploration Fund) and F. G. Kenyon (British Museum Catalogues); 
also Mr Kenyon's annual summaries in the Archaeological Report of 
the Egypt Exploration Fund. An ample selection of the Greek in- 
scriptions from Egypt is to be found in W. Dittenberger, Orientis 
Graeci inscriptiones selectae (2 vols., Leipzig, 1903-1905). 

(R. S. P. ; F. Ll. G.) 

2. Mahommedan Period. 

(1) Moslem Conquest of Egypt. — In accordance with the scheme 
of universal conquest conceived by the founder of Islam, an 
army of some 4000 men was towards the end of the year a.d. 639 
sent against Egypt under the command of 'Amr (see 'Amr-ibn- 
el-Ass), by the second caliph, Omar I., who had some doubt 
as to the expediency of the enterprise. The commander marched 
from Syria through El-'Arlsh, easily took Farama or Pelusittm, 
and thence proceeded to Bilbeis, where he was delayed for a 
month; having captured this place, he proceeded to a point 
on the Nile called Umm Dunain, the siege of which also occasioned 
him some difficulty. After taking it, he crossed the Nile to the 
Fayum. On the 6th of June of the following year (640) a second 
army of 12,000 men, despatched by Omar, arrived at Heliopolis 
(On). 'Amr recrossed the river and joined it, but presently was 
confronted by a Roman army, which he defeated at the battle 
of Heliopolis (July 640) ; this victory was followed by the siege 
of Babylon, which after some futile attempts at negotiation was 
taken partly by storm and partly by capitulation on Good Friday, 
the 6th of April 641. 'Amr next proceeded in the direction of 
Alexandria, which was surrendered to him by a treaty signed 
on the 8th of November 641, under which it was to be occupied 
by the Moslems on the 29th of September of the following year. 
The interval was spent by him in founding the city Fostat 
(Fus^at), near the modern Cairo, and called after the camp 
(Fossatum) occupied by him while besieging Babylon; and in 
reducing those coast towns that still offered resistance. The 
Thebaid seems to have surrendered with scarcely any opposition. 

The ease with which this valuable province was wrenched 
from the Roman empire appears to have been due to the treachery 
of the governor of Egypt, Cyrus, patriarch of Alexandria, and 
the incompetence of the generals of the Roman forces. The 
former, called by the Arabs Mukaukis (Muqauqis) from his 
Coptic name Pkauchios, had for ten years before the arrival of 
'Amr maintained a fierce persecution of the Jacobite sect, to 
which the bulk of the Copts belonged. During the siege of 
Babylon he had been recalled and exiled, but after the death of 
Heraclius had been reinstated as patriarch by Heraclonas, and 
been welcomed back to Alexandria with general rejoicing in 
September 641. Since Alexandria could neither have been 
stormed nor starved out by the Arabs, his motives for surrender- 
ing it, and with it the whole of Egypt, have been variously 
interpreted, some supposing him to have been secretly a convert 
to Islam. The notion that the Arab invaders were welcomed 
and assisted by the Copts, driven to desperation by the persecu- 
tion of Cyrus, appears to be refuted by the fact that the invaders 
treated both Copts and Romans with the same ruthlessness; 
but the dissensions which prevailed in the Christian communities, 
leading to riots and even civil war in Alexandria and elsewhere, 
probably weakened resistance to the common enemy. An 
attempt was made in the year 645 with a force under Manuel, 
commander of the Imperial forces, to regain Alexandria for the 
Byzantine empire; the city was surprised, and held till the 
summer of 646, when it was again stormed by 'Amr. In 654 a 
fleet was equipped by Constans with a view to an invasion, but 
it was repulsed, and partly destroyed by storm. From that time 
no serious effort was made by the Eastern Empire to regain pos- 
session of the country. And it would appear that at the time of 
the attempt by Manuel the Arabs were actually assisted by the 



9 1 

Copts, who at the first had found the Moslem lighter than the 
Roman yoke. 

A question often debated by Arabic authors is whether Egypt 
was taken by storm or capitulation, but, so far as the transfer- 
ence of the country was accomplished by the first 
JHZHJfa. taking of Alexandria, there seems no doubt that the 
tioa. latter view is correct. The terms were those on 

which conquered communities were ordinarily taken 
under Moslem protection. In return for a tribute of money 
(jizyah) and food for the troops of occupation (daribat-al-ta'am) , 
the Christian inhabitants of Egypt were to be excused military 
service, and to be left free in the observance of their religion 
and the administration of their affairs. 

From 639 to 968 Egypt was a province of the Eastern Caliph- 
ate, and was ruled by governors sent from the cities which at 
different times ranked as capitals. Like other provinces of the 
later Abbasid Caliphate its rulers were, during this period, able 
to establish quasi-independent dynasties, such being those of 
the Tulunids who ruled from 868 to 905, and the Ikshidis from 
935-969. In 969 the country was conquered by Jauhar for 
the Fatimite caliph Mo'izz, who transferred his capital from 
Mahdia (q.v.) in the Maghrib to Cairo. This dynasty lasted till 
11 7 1, when Egypt was again embodied in the Abbasid empire 
by Saladin, who, however, was himself the founder of a quasi- 
independent dynasty called the Ayyubites or Ayyubids, which 
lasted till 1252. The Ayyubites were followed by the Mameluke 
dynasties, usually classified as Bahri from 1252-1382, and Burji 
from 1382-1517; these sovereigns were nominally under the 
suzerainty of Abbasid caliphs, who were in reality instruments 
of the Mameluke sultans, and resided at Cairo. In 151 7 Egypt 
became part of the Ottoman empire and was governed by pashas 
sent from Constantinople, whose influence about 1707 gave way 
to that of officials chosen from the Mamelukes who bore the title 
Sheik al-balad. After the episode of the French occupation, 
government by pashas was restored; Mehemet Ali (appointed 
pasha in 1805) obtained from the Porte in 1841 the right to 
bequeath the sovereignty to his descendants, one of whom, 
Ismail Pasha, received the title Khedive, which is still held by 
Mehemet Ali's descendants. 

(2) The following is a list of the governors of Egypt in these 
successive periods: — 

(a) During the undivided Caliphate. 

'Amr-ibn-el-Ass, a.h. 18-24 (a.d. 639-645). 

'Abdallah b. Sa'd b. Abi Sarh, 24-36 (645-656). 

Qais b. Sa'd b. 'Ubadah, 36 (657-658). 

Mahommed b. Abu Bekr, 37-38 (658). 

Ashtar Malik b. al-Harith appointed, but never governed). 

"Amr-ibn-el-Ass, 38-43 (658-663). 

'Utbah b. Abu Sofian, 43-44 (664-665). 

'Utbah b. 'Amir, 44-45 (665). 

Maslama b. Mukhallad, 45-62 (665-682). 

Sa'id b. Yazid b. 'Alqamah, 62-64 (682-684). 

Abdarrahman b. 'Utbah b. Jahdam, 64-65 (684). 

Abdalaziz ('Abd al-'Aziz) b. Merwan, 65-86 (685-705). 

'Abdallah b. 'Abd al-Malik, 86-90 (705-708). 

Qurrah b. Sharlk al-'Absi, 90-96 (709-714). 

'Abd al-Malik b. Rifa'ah al-Fahmi, 96-99 (715-717). 

Ayyub b. Shurahbil al-Asbahi, 99-101 (717-720). 

Bishr b. Safwan al-Kalbi, 101-102 (720-721). 

Hanzalah b. Safwan, 102-105 (721-724). 

Mahommed b. 'Abd al-Malik, 105 (724). 

Hurr b. Yusuf, 105-108 (724-727). 

Hafs b. al-Walid, 108 (727). 

'Abd al-Malik b. Rifa'ah, 109 (727). 

Walid b. Rifa'ah, 109-117 (727-735). 

'Abd al-Rahman b. Khalid, 117-118 (735). 

Hanzalah b. Safwan, 1 18-124 (735-742). 

Hafs b. al-Walid, 124-127 (742-745). 

Hassan b. 'Atahiyah al-Tu'jibi, 127 (745). 

Hafs b. al-Walid, 127 (745). 

Hautharah b. Suhail al-Bahili, 128-131 (745-749). 

Mughirah b. 'Ubaidallah al-Fazari, 131-132 (749); 

'Abd al-Malik b. Marwan al-Lakhmi, 132 (750). 

Salih b. 'AH, 133 (750-751). 

Abu 'Aun 'Abdalmalik b. Yazid, 133-136 (751-753). 

Salih b. 'Ali, 136-137 (753-755) — second time. 

Abu 'Aun, 1 37-1 41 (755-758) — second time. 

Musa b. Ka'b b. 'Uyainah al-Tamimi, 141 (758-759). 

Mahommed b. al-Ash'ath b. 'Uqbah al-Khuza i, 141-143 (759- 

Humaid b. Qahjabah b. Shabib al-Ta'i, 143-144 (760-762). 
Yazid b. Hatim b. Kabisah al-Muhallabi, 144-152 (762-769). 
'Abdallah b. 'Abdarrahman b. Moawiya b. Hudaij, 152-155 

Mahommed b. Abdarrahman b. Moawiya b. Hudaij, 155 (772). 
Musa b. 'Ulayy b. Rabah al-Lakhmi, 155-161 (772-778). 
'Isa b. Luqman b. Mahommed al-Jumahi, 161-162 (778). 
Wadih, 162 (779). 

Mansur b. Yazid b. Mansur al-Ru'aini, 162 (779). 
Abu Salih Yahya b. DawGd b. Mamdud, 162-164 (779~78o). 
Salim b. Sawadah al-Tamimi, 164 (780-781). 
Ibrahim b. Salih b. 'Ali, 165-167 (781-784). 
Musa b. Mus'ab b. al-Rabi al-Khath'ami, 167-168 (784-785). 
Usamah b. 'Amr b. 'Alqamah al-Ma'afiri, 168 (785). 
al Fadl b. Salih b. 'Ali al-'Abbasi, 168-169 (785-786). 
'Alib. Sulaiman b. 'Ali al-'Abbasi, 169-171 (786-787). 
Musab. 'Isab. Musa al-'Abbasi, 171-172 (787-789). 
Maslamah b. Yahya b. Qurrah al-Bajili, 172-173 (789-790). 
Mahommed b. Zuhair al-Azdi, 173 (790). 
Dawud b.. Yazid b. Hatim al-Muhallabi, 174-175 (790). 
Musa b. 'Isa al-'Abbasi, 175-176 (790-792). 
Ibrahim b. Salih, 176 (792). 
Salih b. Ibrahim, 176 (792). 
Abdallah b. al-Musayyib b. Zuhair al Dabbi, 176-177 (792- 

Ishaq b. Sulaiman b. 'All al-'Abbasi, 177-178 (793-794). 
Harthamah b. A'yan, 178 (794-795). 
'Obaidallahb. al-Mahdi, 179 (795). 
Musa b. 'Isa al-'Abbasi, 179-180 (795-796). 
'Obaidallah b. al-Mahdi, 180-181 (796-797) — second time. 
Isma'il b. Salih b. 'Ali al-'Abbasi, 181-182 (797-798). 
Isma'il b. 'Isa b. Musa al-'Abbasi, 182-183 (798). 
Laith b. al-Fadl al-Abiwardi, 183-187 (798-803). 
Ahmad b. Isma'il b. 'Ali al-'Abbasi, 187-189 (803-805). 
'Obaidallah b. Mahommed b. Ibrahim al-'Abbasi, 189-190 

Husain b. Jamil, 190-192 (806-808). 
Malik b. Dalhamb. 'Isa al-Kalbi, 192-193 (808). 
Hasan b. al-Tahtah, 193-194 (808-809). 
Hatim b. Harthamah b. A'yan, 194-1195 (809-811). 
Jabir b. al-Ash'ath b. Yahya al-Ta'i, 195-196 (811-812). 
'Abbadb. Mahommedb. Hayyan al-Balkhi, 196-198 (812-813). 
Mottalib b. 'Abdallah b. Malik al-Khuza'i, 198 (813-814). 
'Abbas b. Musa b. 'Isa al-'Abbasi, 198-199 (814). 
Mottalib b. 'Abdallah, 199-200 (814-816) — second time. 
Sari b. al-Hakam b. Yusuf, 200-201 (816). 
Sulaiman b. Ghalib b. Jibril al-Bajili, 201 (816-817). 
Sari b. al Hakam, 201-205 (817-820). 
Abu Nasr Mahommed b. al-Sari, 205 (820-821). 
'Obaidallah b. al-Sari, 205-211 (821-826). 
'Abdallah b. Tahir, 21 1-2 13 (826-829). 
Mahommed b. Harun (al-Mo'tasim), 213-214 (829). 
"Umair b. Al-Walid al-Tamimi al-Badhaghisi, 214 (829). 
'Isa b. Yazid, 214 (829). 
'Abduyah b. Jabalah, 215-216 (830-831). 
'Isa b. Mansur b. Musa al-Rafi'i, 216-217 (831-832). 
Nasr b. Abdallah Kaidar al-Safadi, 217-219 (832-834). 
Muzaffar b. Kaidar, 219 (834). 

Musa b. Abi'l- 'Abbas Thabital HanafI, 219-224 (834-839). 
Malik b. Kaidar al Safadi, 224-226 (839-841). 
'Ali b. Yahya abu 1-Hasan al-Armanl, 226-228 (841-842). 
'Isa b. Mansur al-Rafi'i, 229-233 (843-847). 
Harthamah b. al-Nadir al Jabali, 233-234 (848-849). 
Hatim b. Harthamah, 234 (849). 
'Alib. Yahya, 234-235 (849-850). 
Ishaq b. Yahya al-Khatlani, 235-236 (850-851). 
'Abd al-Wahid b. Yahya b. Mansur, 236-238 (851-852). 
'Anbasa b. Ishaq b. Shamir, 238-242 (852-856). 
Yazid b. 'Abdallah b. Dinar, 242-253 (856-867). 
Muzahim b. Khaqan al-Turki, 253-254 (867-868). 
Ahmad b. Muzahim b. Khaqan, 254 (868). 
Urjuz b. UlughTarkhan al-Turki, 254 (868). 

Tulunid house. 

Ahmad b. Tulun, 254-270 (868-884). 
Khomaruya b. Ahmad, 270-282 (884-896). 
Jaish b. Khomaruya, 282 (896). 
Harun b. Khomaruya, 283-292 (896-904). 

Shaiban b. Ahmad, 292 (905). 

'Isa b. Mahommed al-Naushari, 292 (905). 

Mahommed b. 'Ali al-Khalanji, 292-293 (905-906). 

'Isa al-Naushari, 293-297 (906-910) — second time. 

Takin b. Abdallah al-Khazari, 297-302 (910-915). 

Dhuka al-Rumi, 303-307 (915-919). 

Takin b. 'Abdallah, 307-309 (919-921) — second time. 

Abu Qabus Mahmud b. Hamal, 309 (921). 

Hilal b. Badr, 309-311 (921-923). 

9 2 



Ahmad b. Kaighlagh, 311 (923). 

Takin b. Abdallah, 311-321 (923-933) — third time. 

Mahommed b. Takin, 321 (933). 

Ikshidi house. 

Mahommed b. Tughj al-Ikshid, 321 (933). 

[Ahmad b. Kaighlagh, 321-322 (933-934)]. 

Mahommed b. Tughj, 323-334 (934-946) — second time. 

Onjur b. al-Ikshid, 334-349 (946-961). 

'Ali b. al-Ikshid, 349-355 (961-966). 

Kafur b. Abdallah al-Ikshidi, 355-357 (966-968). 

Abu'l-Fawaris Ahmad b. Ali b. al-Ikshid, 357 (968). 

(b) Fatimite Caliphs, 357-567 (969-1171). 

Mo'izz Abu Tamim Ma'add (or li-din allah), 357-365 (969-975). 

'Aziz Abu Mansur Nizar (al-'Aziz billah), 365-386 (975-996). 

Hakim [Abu "Ali Mansur], 386-411 (996-1020). 

Zahir [Abu'l-Hasan 'All], 411-427 (1020-1035). 

Mostansir [Abu Tamim Ma'add], 427-487 (1035-1094). 

Mosta'li [Abu'l-Qasim Ahmad], 487-495 (1094-1101). 

Amir [Abu 'All Mansur], 495-524 (1101-1130). 

Hafiz [Abu'l-Maimun 'Abd al-Majid], 524-544 (1130-1149). 

Zafir [Abu'l-Mansur Isma'il], 544-549 (1149-1154). 

Fa'iz [Abu'l-Qasim 'Isa], 549-555 (1154-1160'). 

'Adid [Abu Mahommed 'Abdallah], 555-567 (1160-1171). 

(c) Ayyubite Sultans, 564-648 (1 169-1250). 

Malik al-Nasir Salah al-din Yusuf b. Ayyub (Saladin), 564-589 

(1169-1193). ' 
Malik al-'Aziz 'Imad al-din Othman, 589-595 (1193-1198). 
Malik al-Mansur Mahommed, 595-596 (1198-1199). 
Malik al-'Adil Saif al-din Abu Bakr, 596-615 (1199-1218). 
Malik al-Kamil Mahommed, 615-635 (1218-1238). 
Malik al-'Adil II. Saif al-din Abu Bakr, 635-637 (1238-1240). 
Malik al-Salih Najm al-din Ayyub, 637-647 (1240-1249). 
Malik al-Mo'azzam Tiiranshah, 647-648 (1249-1250). 
Malik al-Ashraf Musa, 648-650 (1250-1252). 

(d) Bahri Mamelukes, 648-792 (1250-1390). 

Shajar al-durr, 643 (1250). 

Malik al-Mo'izz 'Izz al-din Aibek, 648-655 (1250-1257). 

Malik al-Mansur Nureddin 'Ali, 655-657 (1257-1259). 

Malik al-Mozaffar 9eif al-din Kotuz, 657-658 (1259-1260). 

Malik al-Zahir [Rukn al-din (Rukneddin) Bibars Bundukdari], 

658-676 (1260-1277). 
Malik al-Sa'Id Nasir al-din Barakah Khan, 676-678 (1277- 

Malik ai-'Adil Badr al-din Salamish, 678 (1279). 
Malik al-Mansur Saif al-din Qala'un, 678-689 (1279-1290). 
Malik al-Ashraf [Salah al-din Khalil], 689-693 (1290-1293). 
> Malik al-Nasir [Nasir al-din Mahommed], 693-694 (1293-1294). 
Malik al-'Adil [Zain al-din Kitboga], 694-696 (1294-1296). 
Mansur [rlusam al-din Lajin], 696-698 (1296-1298). 
Nasir Mahommed (again), 698-708 (1298-1308). 
Mo?affar [Rukn al-din Bibars Jashengir], 708-709 (1308-1310). 
Nasir Mahommed (third time), 709-741 (1310-1341). 
Mansur [Saif al-din Abu Bakr], 741-742 (1341). 
Ashraf [Ala'u '1-din Kuchuk], 742 (1341-1342). 
Nasir [Shihab al-din Ahmad], 742-743 (1342). 
Salih 'Imad al-din Isma'il], 743-746 (1342-1345). 
Kamil [Saif al-din Sha'ban], 746-747 (1345-1346). 
Mozaffar [Saif al-din Hatti], 747-748 (1346-1347). 
Nasir [Nasir al-din Hasan], 748-752 (1347-1351). 
Salih [Salah al-din Salih], 752-755 (I35I-I354)- 
Nasir [Hasan] (again), 755~762 1,1354-1361). 
Mansur [Salah al-din Mahommed], 762-764 (1361-1363). 
Ashraf [Nasir al-din Sha'ban], 764-778 (1363-1377). 
Mansur ['Ala'u '1-din 'Ali], 778-783 (1377-1381). 
Salih. [Salah al-din Hajji], 783-784 (1381-1382). 
Barkuk' or Barquq (see below), 784-791 (1382-1389). 
Hajji again, with title of Mozaffar, 791-792 (1389-1390). 

(e) Burji Mamelukes, 784-922 (1382-1517). 

Zahir [Saif al-din Barquq], 784-801 (1382-1398) [interrupted 

by Hajji, 791-792]. 
Nasir [Nasir al-din Faraj], 801-808 (1398-1405). 
Mansur ['Izz al-din Abdalaziz ('Abd al-'Aziz)], 808-809 (1405- 

Nasir Faraj (again), 809-815 (1406-1412). 
'Adil Mosta'in (Abbasid caliph), 815 (1412). 
Mu'ayyad [Sheikh], 815-824 (1412-1421). 
Mozaffar [Ahmad], 824 (1421). 
Zahir [Saif al-din Tatar], 824 (1421). 
Salih [Nasir al-din Mahommed], 824-825 (1421-1422). 
Ashraf [Saif al-din Barsbai], 825-842 (1422-1438). 
'Aziz []amal al-din YOsuf], 842 (1438). 
Zahir [Saif al-din Jakmak], 842-857 (1438-1453). 
Mansur [Fakhr al-din Othman], 857 (1453). 
Ashraf [Saif al-din Inal], 857-865 (1453-1461). 
Mu'ayyad [Shihab al-din Ahmad], 865 (1461). 

Zahir [Saif al-din Khoshkadam], 865-872 (1461-1467). 

Zahir [Saif al-din Yelbai or Bilbai], 872 (1467). 

Zahir [Timurbogha], 872-873 (1467-1468). 

Ashraf [Saif al-din (Kait Bey)], 873-901 (1468-1495). 

Nasir [Mahommed], 901-904 (1495-1498). 

Zahir [Kansuh], 904-905 (1498-1499). 

Ashraf Qanbalat or Jan Belat], 905-906 (1499-1501). 

'Adil Tumanbey (1501). 

Ashraf [Kansuh Ghuri], 906-922 (1501-1516). 

Ashraf [Tumanbey], 922 (1516-1517). 

(/) Turkish Governors after the Ottoman Conquest. 

Khair Bey, 923 (1517). 

Mustafa Pasha, 926 (1520). # 

Ahmad, 929 (1523). 

Qasim, 930 (1524). 

Ibrahim, 931 (1525). 

Suleiman, 933 (1527). 

Dawud, 945 (1538). 

'All, 956 (1549)- 

Mahommed, 961 (1554). 

Iskandar, 963 (1556). 

'AH al-Khadim, 968 (1561). 

Mustafa, 969 (1561). 

'All al-Sufi, 971 (1563). 

Mahmtid, 973 (1566). 

Sinan, 975 (1567). 

Hosain, 980 (1573). 

Masih, 982 (1575). 

Hasan al-KhSdim, 988 (1580). 

Ibrahim, 991 (1583). 

Sinan, 992 (1584). 

Uwais, 994 (1585). 

Hafiz Ahmad, 99Q (1591). 

Kurt, 1003 (1595). 

Sayyid Mahommed, 1004 (1596). 

Khidr, 1006 (1598). 

'AH al-Silahdar, 1009 (1601). 

Ibrahim, 1012 (1604). 

Mahommed al-Kurji, 1013 (1605). 

Hasan, 1014 (1605). 

Mahommed al-Sufi, 1016 (1607). 

Ahmad al-Daftardar, 1022 (1613). 

Mustafa Lafakli, 1026 (1617). 

la'far, 1027 (1618). 

Mustafa, 1028 (1619). 

Hosain, 1028 (1619). 

Mahommed, 1031 (1622). 

Ibrahim, 1031 (1622). 

Mustafa, 1032 (1623). 

'Ali, '1032 (1623). 

Mustafa, 1032 (1624). 

Bairam, 1036 (1626). 

Mahommed, 1037 (1627). 

Musa, 1040 (1631). 

Khalllal-Bustanji, 1041 (1631). 

Ahmad al-Kurji, 1042 (1633). 

Hosain, 1045 (1636). 

Mahommed b. Ahmad, 1047 

Mustafa al-Bustanji, 1049 (1639). 
Maqsfid, 1050 (1641). 
Suyan Bey, 1054 (1644). 
Ayyub, 1055 (1645). 
Mahommed b. Haidar, 1057 

(1647). ■ 
Ahmad, 1058 (1648). 
'Abd al-Rahman, 1061 (1651). 
Mahommed al-Silahdar, 1062 

Ghazi, 1066 (1655). 
Omar, 1067 (1652). 
Ahmad, 1077 (1666). 
Ibrahim, 1078 (1667). 


1 1 16 (1704). 
1119 (1707). 
1121 (1709). 

Hosain, 1085 (1674). 

Hasan al-Janbala^, 1087 (1676). 

Othman, 1091 (1680). 

Hasan al-Silahdar, 1099 (1688). 

Ahmad, 1101 (1690). 

'Ali Qilij, 1 102 (1691). 

Isma'il, 1107 (1696). 

Hosain, 1109 (1697). 

Qara Mahommed or 

mi (1699). 
Mahommed Rami 
'All Muslim, 1 1 18 
Hosain Ketkhuda, 
Ibrahim Qabudan, 
Khalil, 1122 (1710). 
Wall, 1 123 (171 1). 
'Abidin, 1127 (1715). 
'All Izmirli, 1129 (1717). 
Rajab, 1130 (1718). 
Mahommed al-Bashimi, 1 132 

'AH, 1 138 (1728). 
Bakir, 1141 (1729). 
'Abdallah Kuburhi, 1142 (1729). 
Mahommed Silahdar.i 144(1732). 
Othman HalabI, 1146 (1733). 
Bakir, 1 148 (1735). 
Mustafa, 1149 (1736). 
Sulaiman'Azim. 1 1 52( 1 739) . 
'AH Hakim Oghlu,f 153 (1740). 
Yahy'a, 1154 (1741). 
Mahommed Yedkeshi, 1 156 

Mahommed Raghib,ll58 (1745). 
Ahmad Kuruzir, 1161 (1748). 
Sharif 'Abdallah, 1163 (1750). 
Mahommed Amin, 1166 (1753). 
Mustafa, 1166 (1753). 
'Ali Hakim Oghlu, 1169 (1756). 
Mahommed Sa'id, 1 171 (1758). 
Mustafa, 1173 (1759). 
Ahmad Kamil, 1174 (1761). 
Bakir, 1175 (1761). 
Hasan, 1 176 (1761). 
Hamzah, 1179 (1765). 
Mahommed Raqim, 1181 (1767). 
Mahommed Urflu, 1 182 (1768). 
Ahmad, 1183 (1770). 
Qara Khalil, 1184 (1770). 
Mustafa Nabulsi, 1188 (1774). 
Ibrahim 'Arabgirli, 1189 (1775). 
Mahommed 'Izzet, 1 190 (1776). 
Isma'il, 1193 (I779)- 
Mahommed Malik, 1195 (1781). 
Sharif 'All Qassab, 1196 (1782). 
Mahommed Silahdar, 1 1 98 ( 1 783). 
Mahommed Yeyen, 1200 (1785). 
'Abidin Sharif, 1201 (1787). 
Isma'il TunisI, 1203 (1788). 
$alih Qaisarli, 1209 (1794). 
Abu Bakr Tarabulsi, 1211 


French Occupation. 
Khosrev, 1216 (1802). Ali Jaza'irll or Tarabulsi, 1218 

Tahir, 1218 (1803). (1803). 

Khorshid, 1219 (1804). 

(g) Hereditary Pashas {later Khedives), from 1220 (from 1805). 
Mehemet 'Ali, 1220-1264 (1805- Sa'id, 1270-1280 (1854-1863). 

1848). Isma'il, 1280-1300 (1863-1882). 

Ibrahim, 1264 (1848). Tewfik, 1300-1309 (1882-1892). 

'Abbas I., 1264-1270 (1848-1854). Abbas II., 1309 (1892). 

(3) Period under Governors sent from the Metropolis of the 
eastern Caliphate. — The first governor of the newly acquired 
province was the conqueror 'Amr, whose jurisdiction was 




presently restricted to Lower Egypt; Upper Egypt, which was 
divided into three provinces, being assigned to Abdallah b. Sa'd, 
on whom the third caliph conferred the government of Lower 
Egypt also, 'Amr being recalled, owing to his unwillingness to 
extort from his subjects as much money as would satisfy the 
caliph. In the troubles which overtook the Islamic empire with 
the accession of Othman, Egypt was greatly involved, and it 
had to be reconquered from the adherents of Ali for Moawiya 
(Mo'awiyah) by 'Amr, who in a.h. 38 was rewarded for his ser- 
vices by being reinstated as governor, with the right to appro- 
priate the surplus revenue instead of sending it as tribute to the 
metropolis. In the confusion which followed on the death of 
the Omayyad caliph Yazld the Egyptian Moslems declared 
themselves for Abdallah b. Zobair, but their leader was defeated 
in a battle near Ain Shams (December 684) by Merwan b. Bakam 
(Merwan I.), who had assumed the Caliphate, and the conqueror's 
son Abd al-'AzIz was appointed governor. They also declared 
themselves against the usurper Merwan II. in 745, whose lieu- 
tenant al-Bautharah had to enter Fostat at the head of an army. 
In 750 Merwan II. himself came to Egypt as a fugitive from the 
Abbasids, but found that the bulk of the Moslem population 
had already joined with his enemies, and was defeated and slain 
in the neighbourhood of Giza in July of the same year. The 
Abbasid general, Salih b. Ali, who had won the victory, was then 
appointed governor. 

During the period that elapsed between the Moslem conquest 
and the end of the Omayyad dynasty the nature of the Arab 
occupation had changed from what had originally been intended, 
the establishment of garrisons, to systematic colonization. 
Conversions of Copts to Islam were at first rare, and the old 
system of taxation was maintained for the greater part of the first 
Islamic century. This was at the rate of a dinar per feddan, of 
which the proceeds were used in the first place for the pay of the 
troops and their families, with about half the amount in kind 
for the rations of the army. The process by which the first of 
these contributions was turned into coin is still obscure; it is 
clear that the corn when threshed was taken over by certain 
public officials who deducted the amount due to the state. In 
general the system is well illustrated by the papyri forming the 
Schott-Reinhardt collection at Heidelberg (edited by C.H. Becker, 
1906), which contain a number of letters on the subject from 
Qurrah b. Shank, governor from a.h. 00 to 96. The old division 
of the country into districts (nomoi) is maintained, and to the 
inhabitants of these districts demands are directly addressed 
by the governor of Egypt, while the head of the community, 
ordinarily a Copt, but in some cases a Moslem, is responsible 
for compliance with the demand. An official called " receiver " 
(qabbdl) is chosen by the inhabitants of each district to take 
charge of the produce till it is delivered into the public magazines, 
and receives 5% for his trouble. Some further details are 
to be found in documents preserved by the archaeologist 
Maqrlzi, from which it appears that the sum for which each 
district was responsible was distributed over the unit in such 
a way that artisans and tradesmen paid at a rate similar to that 
which was enforced on those employed in agriculture. It is not 
known at what time the practice of having the amount due 
settled by the community was altered into that according to 
which it was settled by the governor, or at what time the practice 
of deducting from the total certain expenses necessary for the 
maintenance of the community was abandoned. The researches 
of Wellhausen and Becker have made it clear that the difference 
which is marked in later Islam between a poll-tax (jizyah) and 
a land-tax (khardj) did not at first exist: the papyri of the 1st 
century know only of the jizyah, which, however, is not a poll-tax 
but a land-tax (in the main). The development of the poll-tax 
imposed on members of tolerated cults seems to be due to various 
causes, chief of them the acquisition of land by Moslems, who 
were not at first allowed to possess any, the conversion of Coptic 
landowners to Islam, and the enforcement (towards the end of 
the 1st century of Islam) of the poll-tax on monks. The treasury 
could not afford to lose the land-tax, which it would naturally 
forfeit by the first two of the above occurrences, and we read of 

various expedients being tried to prevent this loss. Such were 
making the Christian community to which the proselyte had 
belonged pay as much as it had paid when his lands belonged to 
it, making proselytes pay as before their conversion, or com- 
pelling them to abandon their lands on conversion. Eventually 
the theory spread that all land paid land-tax, whereas members 
of tolerated sects paid a personal tax also; but during the 
evolution of this doctrine the relations between conquerors and 
conquered became more and more strained, and from the time 
when the control of the finance was separated from the admin- 
istration of the country (a.d. 715) complaints of extortion became 
serious; under the predecessor of Qurrah, 'Abdallah b. 'Abd al- 
Malik, the country suffered from famine, and under this ruler it 
was unable to recover. Under the finance minister Obaidallah 
b. Habhab (720-734) the first government survey by Moslems 
was made, followed by a census; but before this time the higher 
administrative posts had been largely taken out of the hands of 
Copts and filled with Arabs. The resentment of the Copts finally 
expressed itself in a revolt, which broke out in the year 
725, and was suppressed with difficulty. Two years revolt 
after, in order that the Arab element in Egypt might 
be strengthened, a colony of North Arabians (Qaisites) was sent 
for and planted near Bilbeis, reaching the number of 3000 
persons; this immigration also restored the balance between 
the two branches of the Arab race, as the first immigrants had 
belonged almost exclusively to the South Arabian stock. Mean- 
while the employment of the Arabic language had been steadily 
gaining ground, and in 706 it was made the official language of the 
bureaux, though the occasional use of Greek for this purpose 
is attested by documents as late as the year 780. Other revolts 
of the Copts are recorded for the year 739 and 750, the last 
year of Omayyad domination. The outbreaks in all cases are 
attributed to increased taxation. 

The Abbasid period was marked at its commencement by the 
erection of a new capital to the north of Fostat, bearing the 
name 'Askar or " camp." Apparently at this time the practice 
of farming the taxes began, which naturally led to even greater 
extortion than before; and a fresh rising of the Copts is recorded 
for the fourth year of Abbasid rule. Governors, as will be seen 
from the list, were frequently changed. The three officials of 
importance whose nomination is mentioned by the historians in 
addition to that of the governor were the commander of the 
bodyguard, the minister of finance and the judge. Towards the 
beginning of the 3rd Islamic century the practice of giving 
Egypt in fief to a governor was resumed by the caliph Mamun, 
who bestowed this privilege on 'Abdallah b. Tahir, who in 827 
was sent to recover Alexandria, which for some ten years had 
been held by exiles from Spain. 'Abdallah b. Tahir decided to 
reside at Bagdad, sending a deputy to Egypt to govern for him; 
and this example was afterwards followed. In 828, when 
Mamun's brother Motasim was feudal lord, a violent insurrection 
broke out in the IJauf, occasioned, as usual, by excessive taxa- 
tion; it was partly quelled in the next year by Motasim, who 
marched against the rebels with an army of 4000 Turks. The 
rebellion broke out repeatedly in the following years, and in 831 
the Copts joined with the Arabs against the government; the 
state of affairs became so serious that the caliph Mamun himself 
visited Egypt, arriving at Fostat in February 832; his general 
Afshin fought a decisive battle with the rebels at Bashariid 
in the Hauf region, at which the Copts were compelled to sur- 
render; the males were massacred and the women and children 
sold as slaves. 

This event finally crushed the Coptic nation, which never 
again made head against the Moslems. In the following year the 
caliph Motasim, who surrounded himself with a foreign body- 
guard, withdrew the stipends of the Arab soldiers in Egypt; 
this measure caused some of the Arab tribes who had been long 
settled in Egypt to revolt, but their resistance was crushed, and 
the domination of the Arab element in the country from this 
time gave way to that of foreign mercenaries, who, belonging 
to one nation or another, held it for most of its subsequent 
history. Egypt was given in fief to a Turkish general Ashnas 




(Ashinas), who never visited the country, and the rule of in- 
dividuals of Turkish origin prevailed till the rise of the Fatimites, 
who for a time interrupted it. The presence of Turks in Egypt 
is attested by documents as early as 808. While the governor 
t ki h was a PP om ted by the feudal lord, the finance minister 
governors continued to be appointed by the caliph. On the 
appointed, death f Ashnas in 844 Egypt was given in fief to 
another Turkish general Itakh, but in 850 this person 
fell out of favour, and the fief was transferred to Montasir, son 
of the caliph Motawakkil. In 856 it was transferred from him 
to the vizier Fath b. Khaqan, who for the first time appointed 
a Turkish governor. The chief places in the state were also 
filled with Turks. The period between the rise of the Abbasids 
and the quasi-independent dynasties of Egypt was marked by 
much religious persecution, occasioned by the fanaticism of 
some of the caliphs, the victims being generally Moslem sec- 
tarians. (For Egypt under Motawakkil see Caliphate, § c. 
par. 10.) 

The policy of these caliphs also led to severe measures being 
taken against any members of the Alid family or adherents of 
their cause who were to be found in Egypt. 

In the year 868 Egypt was given in fief to a Turkish general 
Bayikbeg, who sent thither as his representative his stepson 
n Ahmad b. Tulun, the first founder of a quasi-inde- 

bynasty. P en dent dynasty. This personage was himself the 
son of a Turk who, originally sent as a slave to Bagdad, 
had risen to high rank in the service of the caliphs. Ahmad b. 
Tulun spent some of his early life in Tarsus, and on his return 
distinguished himself by rescuing his caravan, which conveyed 
treasure belonging to the caliph, from brigands who attacked 
it; he afterwards accompanied the caliph Mosta'In into exile, 
and displayed some honourable qualities in his treatment of the 
fallen sovereign. He found a rival in Egypt in the person of 
Ibn al-Modabbir, the finance minister, who occupied an inde- 
pendent position, and who started the practice of surrounding 
himself with an army of his own slaves or freedmen; of these 
Ibn Tulun succeeded in depriving the finance minister, and they 
formed the nucleus of an army by which he eventually secured 
his own independence. Insurrections by adherents of the Alids 
gave him the opportunity to display his military skill; and 
when in 870 his stepfather died, by a stroke of luck the fief was 
given to his father-in-law, who retained Ahmad in the lieutenancy, 
and indeed extended his authority to Alexandria, which had till 
that time been outside it. The enterprise of a usurper in Syria 
in the year 872 caused the caliph to require the presence of 
Ahmad in that country at the head of an army to quell it ; and 
although this army was not actually employed for the purpose, 
it was not disbanded by Ahmad, who on his return founded a 
fresh city called Kata'i', " the fiefs," S.E. of modern Cairo, to 
house it. On the death of Ahmad's father-in-law in the same 
year, when Egypt was given in fief to the caliph's brother 
Mowaffaq (famous for his defeat of the Zanj), Ahmad secured 
himself in his post by extensive bribery at headquarters; and 
in the following year the administration of the Syrian frontier 
was conferred on him as well. By 875 he found himself strong 
enough to refuse to send tribute to Bagdad, preferring to spend 
the revenues of Egypt on the maintenance of his army and the 
erection of great buildings, such as his famous mosque; and 
though Mowaffaq advanced against him with an army, the 
project of reducing Ahmad to submission had to be abandoned 
for want of means. In 877 and 878 Ahmad advanced into Syria 
and obtained the submission of the chief cities, and at Tarsus 
entered into friendly relations with the representatives of the 
Byzantine emperor. During his absence his son 'Abbas revolted 
in Egypt; on the news of his father's return he fled to Barca, 
whence he endeavoured to conquer the Aghlabite dominions in 
the Maghrib; he was, however, defeated by the Aghlabite ruler, 
and returned to Barca, where he was again defeated by his 
father's forces and taken prisoner. 

In 882 relations between Ahmad and Mowaffaq again became 
strained, and the former conceived the bold plan of getting the 
caliph Mo'tamid into his power, which, however, was frustrated 

by Mowaffaq's vigilance; but an open rupture was the result, 
as Mowaffaq formally deprived Ahmad of his lieutenancy, while 
Ahmad equally formally declared that Mowaffaq had forfeited 
the succession. A revolt that broke out at Tarsus caused Ahmad 
to traverse Syria once more in 883, but illness compelled him 
to return, and on the 10th of May 884 he died at his residence in 
Katp.T. He was the first to establish the claim of Egypt to 
govern Syria, and from his time Egypt grew more and more 
independent of the Eastern caliphate. He appears to have 
invented the fiction which afterwards was repeatedly employed, 
by which the money spent on mosque-building was supposed to 
have been furnished by discoveries of buried treasure. 

He was succeeded by his son Khomaruya, then twenty years 
of age, who immediately after his accession had to deal with an 
attempt on the part of the caliph to recover Syria; this attempt 
failed chiefly through dissensions between the caliph's officers, 
but partly through the ability of Khomaruya's general, who 
succeeded in winning a battle after his master had run away 
from the field. By 886 Mowaffaq found it expedient to grant 
Khomaruya the possession of Egypt, Syria, and the frontier 
towns for a period of thirty years, and ere long, owing to the 
disputes of the provincial governors, Khomaruya found it possible 
to extend his domain to the Euphrates and even the Tigris. 
On the death of Mowaffaq in 891 the Egyptian governor was 
able to renew peaceful relations with the caliphs, and receive 
fresh confirmation in his possessions for thirty years. The 
security which he thereby gained gave him the opportunity to 
indulge his taste for costly buildings, parks and other luxuries, 
of which the chroniclers give accounts bordering on the fabulous. 
After the marriage of his daughter to the caliph, which was 
celebrated at enormous expense, an arrangement was made giving 
the Tulunid sovereign the viceroyalty of a region extending 
from Barca on the west to Hit on the east; but tribute, ordinarily 
to the amount of 300,000 dinars, was to be sent to the metropolis. 
His realm enjoyed peace till his death in 896, when he fell a 
victim to some palace intrigue at Damascus. 

His son and successor Abu'l-'Asakir Jaish was fourteen years 
old at his accession, and being without adequate guidance soon 
revealed his incompetence, which led to his being murdered after 
a reign of six months by his troops, who gave his place to his 
brother Harun, who was of about the same age. In the eight 
years of his government the Tulunid empire contracted, owing 
to the revolts of the deputies which Harun was unable to quell, 
though in 898 he endeavoured to secure a new lease of the 
sovereignty in Egypt and Syria by a fresh arrangement with 
the caliph, involving an increase of tribute. The following years 
witnessed serious troubles in Syria caused by the Carmathians, 
which called for the intervention of the caliph, who at last 
succeeded in defeating these fanatics; the officer Mahommed b. 
Solaiman, to whom the victory was due, was then commissioned 
by the caliph to reconquer Egypt from the Tulflnids, and after 
securing the allegiance of the Syrian prefects he invaded Egypt 
by sea and land at once. Before the arrival of these troops 
Harun had met his death at the hands of an assassin, or else in 
an affray, and his uncle Shaiban, who was placed on the throne, 
found himself without the means to collect an army fit to grapple 
with the invaders. Fostat was taken by Mahommed b. Solaiman 
after very slight resistance, at the beginning of 905, and after the 
infliction of severe punishment on the inhabitants Egypt was 
once more put under a deputy, 'Isa al-Naushari, appointed 
directly by the caliph. 

The old regime was not restored without an attempt made by 
an adherent of the Tulunids to reconquer Egypt ostensibly for 
their benefit, and for a time the caliph's viceroy had to quit the 
capital. The vigorous measures of the authorities at Bagdad 
speedily quelled this rebellion, and the Tulunid palace at Kata'i' 
was then destroyed in order that there might be nothing to 
remind the Egyptians of the dynasty. In the middle of the year 
914 Egypt was invaded for the first time by a Fatimite force 
sent by the caliph al-Mahdi 'Obaidallah, now established at 
Kairawan. The Mahdi's son succeeded in taking Alexandria, 
and advancing as far as the Fayiim; but once more the Abbasid 





caliph sent a powerful army to assist his viceroy, and the invaders 
were driven out of the country and pursued as far as Barca; 
the Fatimite caliph, however, continued to maintain active 
propaganda in Egypt. In 919 Alexandria was again seized by 
the Mahdi's son, afterwards the caliph al-Qaim, and while his 
forces advanced northward as far as Ushmunain (Eshmunain) 
he was reinforced by a fleet which arrived at Alexandria. This 
fleet was destroyed by a far smaller one sent by the Bagdad 
caliph to Rosetta; but Egypt was not freed from the invaders 
till the year 921, when reinforcements had been repeatedly 
sent from Bagdad to deal with them. The extortions necessitated 
by these wars for the maintenance of armies and the incompetence 
of the viceroys brought Egypt at this time into a miserable 
condition; and the numerous political crises at Bagdad pre- 
vented for a time any serious measures being taken to improve 
it. After a struggle between various pretenders to the vice- 
royalty, in which some pitched battles were fought, Mahommed 
b. Tughj, son of a Tulunid prefect of Damascus, was sent by the 
caliph to restore order; he had to force his entrance into the 
country by an engagement with one of the pretenders, Ibn 
Kaighlagh, in which he was victorious, and entered Fostat in 
August 935. ■ 

Mahommed b. Tughj was the founder of the Ikshldl dynasty, 
so called from the title Ikshld, conferred on him at his request 
by the caliph shortly after his appointment to the 
governorship of Egypt; it is said to have had the 
sense of " king " in Ferghana, whence this person's 
ancestors had come to enter the service of the caliph Motasim. 
He had himself served under the governor of Egypt, Takln, 
whose son he displaced, in various capacities, and had afterwards 
held various governorships in Syria. One of the historians 
represents his appointment to Egypt as effected by bribery and 
even forgery. He united in his person the offices of governor 
and minister of finance, which had been separate since the time 
of the Tulunids. He endeavoured to replenish the treasury not 
only by extreme economy, but by inflicting fines on a vast scale 
on persons who had held offices under his predecessor and others 
who had rendered themselves suspect. The disaffected in Egypt 
kept up communications with the Fatimites, against whom the 
Ikshld collected a vast army, which, however, had first to be 
employed in resisting an invasion of Egypt threatened by Ibn 
Raiq, an adventurer who had seized Syria; after an indecisive 
engagement at Lajun the Ikshld decided to make peace with 
Ibn Raiq, undertaking to pay him tribute. The favour after- 
wards shown to Ibn Raiq at Bagdad nearly threw the Ikshld into 
the arms of the Fatimite caliph, with whom he carried on a friendly 
correspondence, one letter of which is preserved. He is even said 
to have given orders to substitute the name of the Fatimite 
caliph for that of the Abbasid in public prayer, but to have been 
warned of the unwisdom of this course. In 941, after the death 
of Ibn Raiq, the Ikshld took the opportunity of invading Syria, 
which the caliph permitted him to hold with the addition of the 
sacred cities of Mecca and Medina, which the Tulunids had 
aspired to possess. He is said at this time to have started (in 
imitation of Ahmad Ibn Tulun) a variety of vexatious enactments 
similar to those afterwards associated with the name of Hakim, 
e.g. compelling his soldiers to dye their hair, and adding to their 
pay for the purpose. 

In the year 944 he was summoned to Mesopotamia to assist 
the caliph, who had been driven from Bagdad by Tuzun and 
was in the power of the Hamdanids; and he proposed, though 
unsuccessfully, to take the caliph with him to Egypt. At this 
time he obtained hereditary rights for his family in the govern- 
ment of that country and Syria. The Hamdanid Saif addaula 
shortly after this assumed the governorship of Aleppo, and 
became involved in a struggle with the Ikshid, whose general, 
Kafur, he defeated in an engagement between Homs and Hamah 
(Hamath). In a later battle he was himself defeated by the 
Ikshld, when an arrangement was made permitting Saif addaula 
to retain most of Syria, while a prefect appointed by the Ikshld 
was to remain in Damascus. The Buyid ruler, who was 
now supreme at Bagdad, permitted the Ikshld to remain in 

possession of his viceroyalty, but shortly" after receiving this 
confirmation he died at Damascus in 946. 

The second of this dynasty was the Ikshld's son tJnjur, who 
had been proclaimed in his father's time, and began his govern- 
ment under the tutelage of the negro Kafur. Syria was immedi- 
ately overrun by Saif addaula, but he was defeated by Kafur 
in two engagements, and was compelled to recognize the over- 
lordship of the Egyptian viceroy. At the death of tJnjur in 
961 his brother Abu'l-gasan 'All was made viceroy with the 
caliph's consent by Kafur, who continued to govern for his 
chief as before. The land was during this period threatened at 
once by the Fatimites from the west; the Nubians from the 
south, and the Carmathians from the east; when the second 
Ikshldl died in 965, Kafur at first made a pretence of appointing 
his young son Ahmad as his successor, but deemed it safer to 
assume the viceroyalty himself, setting an example which in 
Mameluke times was often followed. He occupied the post 
little more than three years, and on his death in 968 the afore- 
mentioned Ahmad, called Abu'l-Fawaris, was appointed suc- 
cessor, under the tutelage of a vizier named Ibn Furat, who had 
long served under the Ikshidls. The accession of this prince 
was followed by an incursion of the Carmathians into Syria, 
before whom the Ikshldl governor fled into Egypt, where he had 
for a time to undertake the management of affairs, and arrested 
Ibn Furat, who had proved himself incompetent. 

The administration of Ibn Furat was fatal to the Ikshidls and 
momentous for Egypt, since a Jewish convert, Jacob, son of 
Killis, who had been in the Ikshld's service, and was ill-treated 
by Ibn Furat, fled to the Fatimite sovereign, and persuaded 
him that the time for invading Egypt with a prospect of success 
had arrived, since there was no one in Fostat capable of organiz- 
ing a plan of defence, and the dissensions between the Buyids 
at Bagdad rendered it improbable that any succour would arrive 
from that quarter. The Fatimite caliph Mo'izz li-dln allah was 
also in correspondence with other residents in Egypt, where 
the Alid party from the beginning of Abbasid times had always 
had many supporters; and the danger from the Carmathians 
rendered the presence of a strong government necessary. The 
Fatimite general Jauhar (variously represented as of Greek, 
Slav and Sicilian origin), who enjoyed the complete confidence 
of the Fatimite sovereign, was placed at the head of an army of 
100,000 men — if Oriental numbers are to be trusted— and 
started from Rakkada at the beginning of March 969 with the 
view of seizing Egypt. 

Before his arrival the administration of affairs had again been 
committed to Ibn Furat, who, on hearing of the threatened 
invasion, at first propos'ed to treat with Jauhar for the peaceful 
surrender of the country; but though at first there was a 
prospect of this being carried out, the majority of the troops 
at Fostat preferred to make some resistance, and an advance 
was made to meet Jauhar in the neighbourhood of Giza. He 
had little difficulty in defeating the Egyptian army, and on the 
6th of July 969 entered Fostat at the head of his forces. The 
name of Mo'izz was immediately introduced into public prayer, 
and coins were struck in his name. The Ikshldl governor of 
Damascus, a cousin of Abu'l-Fawaris Ahmad, endeavoured to 
save Syria, but was defeated at Ramleh by a general sent by 
Jauhar and taken prisoner. Thus the Ikshldl Dynasty came 
to an end, and Egypt was transferred from the Eastern to the 
Western caliphate, of which it furnished the metropolis. 

(4) The Fatimite period begins with the taking of Fostat by 
Jauhar, who immediately began the building of a new city, 
al-Kahira or Cairo, to furnish quarters for the army which he 
had brought. A palace for the caliph and a mosque for the 
army were immediately constructed, the latter still famous as 
al-Azhar, and for many Centuries the centre of Moslem learning. 
Almost immediately after the conquest of Egypt, Jauhar found 
himself engaged in a struggle with the Carmathians (q.v.), whom 
the Ikshldl prefect of Damascus had pacified by a promise of 
tribute; this promise was of course not held binding by the 
Fatimite general (Ja'far b. Falah) by whom Damascus was taken, 
and the Carmathian leader al-Hasan b. Ahmad al-A'sam received 

9 6 



aid from Bagdad for the purpose of recovering Syria to the 
Abbasids. The general Ja'far, hoping to deal with this enemy 
independently of Jauhar, met the Carmathians without waiting 
for reinforcements from Egypt, and fell in battle, his army 
being defeated. Damascus was taken by the Carmathians, and 
the name of the Abbasid caliph substituted for that of Mo'izz 
in public worship. Hasan al-A'sam advanced from Damascus 
through Palestine to Egypt, encountering little resistance on 
the way; and in the autumn of 971 Jauhar found himself 
besieged in his new city. By a timely sortie, preceded by the 
administration of bribes to various officers in the Carmathian 
host, Jauhar succeeded in inflicting a severe defeat on the 
besiegers, who were compelled to evacuate Egypt and part of 

Meanwhile Mo'izz had been summoned to enter the palace 
that had been prepared for him, and after leaving a viceroy to 
take charge of his western possessions he arrived in Alexandria 
on the 31st of May 973, and proceeded to instruct his new subjects 
in the particular form of religion (Shl'ism) which his family 
represented. As this was in origin identical with that professed 
by the Carmathians, he hoped to gain the submission of their 
leader by argument; but this plan was unsuccessful, and there 
was a fresh invasion from that quarter in the year after his arrival, 
and the caliph found himself besieged in his capital. The 
Carmathians were gradually forced to retreat from Egypt and 
then from Syria by some successful engagements, and by the 
judicious use of bribes, whereby dissension was sown among 
their leaders. Mo'izz also found time to take some active 
measures against the Byzantines, with whom his generals 
fought in Syria with varying fortune. Before his death he was 
acknowledged as caliph in Mecca and Medina, as. well as Syria, 
Egypt and North Africa as far as Tangier. 

In the reign cf the second Egyptian Fatimite 'Aziz billah, 
Jauhar, who appears to have been cashiered by Mo'izz, was 
again employed at the instance of Jacob b. Killis, who had been 
raised to the rank of vizier, to deal with the situation in Syria, 
where a Turkish general Aftakln had gained possession of 
Damascus, and was raiding the whole country; on the arrival 
of Jauhar in Syria the Turks called the Carmathians to their 
aid, and after a campaign of many vicissitudes Jauhar had 
to return to Egypt to implore the caliph himself to take the 
field. In August 977 'Aziz met the united forces of Aftakln 
and his Carmathian ally outside Ramleh in Palestine and 
inflicted a crushing defeat on them, which was followed by the 
capture of Aftakln; this able officer was taken to Egypt, and 
honourably treated by the caliph, thereby incurring the jealousy 
of Jacob b. Killis, who caused him, it is said, to be poisoned. 
This vizier had the astuteness to see the necessity of codifying 
the doctrines of the Fatimites, and himself undertook this 
task; in the newly-established mosque of el-Azhar he got his 
master to make provision for a perpetual series of teachers and 
students of his manual. It would appear, however, that a large 
amount of toleration was conceded by the first two Egyptian 
Fatimites to the other sects of Islam, and to other communities. 
Indeed at one time in 'Aziz's reign the vizierate of Egypt was 
held by a Christian, Jesus, son of Nestorius, who appointed as 
his deputy in Syria a Jew, Manasseh b. Abraham. These 
persons were charged by the Moslems with unduly favouring 
their co-religionists, and the belief that the Christians of Egypt 
were in league with the Byzantine emperor, and even burned 
a fleet which was being built for the Byzantine war, led to some 
persecution. Aziz attempted without success to enter into 
friendly relations with the Buyid ruler of Bagdad, 'Adod addaula, 
who was disposed to favour the 'Alids, but caused the claim of 
the Fatimites to descend from 'Ali to be publicly refuted. He 
then tried to gain possession of Aleppo, as the key to 'Irak, but 
this was prevented by the intervention of the Byzantines. 
His North African possessions were maintained and extended 
by 'Ali, son of Bulukkln, whom Mo'izz had left as his deputy; 
but the recognition of the Fatimite caliph in this region was 
little more than nominal. 

His successor Abu 'Ali al-Mansur, who reigned under the 

title al-Hakim bi'amr alldh, came to the throne at the age of 
eleven, being the son of 'Aziz by a Christian mother. He was 
at first under the tutelage of the Slav Burjuwan, whose 
policy it was to favour the Turkish element in the army as 
against the Maghribine, on which the strength of the Fatimites 
had till then rested; his conduct of affairs was vigorous and 
successful, and he concluded a peace with the Greek emperor. 
After a few years' regency he was assassinated at the instance 
of the young sovereign, who at an early age developed a dislike 
for control and jealousy of his rights as caliph. He is branded 
by historians as the Caligula of the East, who took a delight in 
imposing on his subjects a variety of senseless and capricious 
regulations, and persecuting different sections of them by cruel 
and arbitrary measures. It is observable that some of those 
with which Hakim is credited are also ascribed to Ibn Tulun 
and the Ikshid (Mahommed b. Tughj). He is perhaps best 
remembered by his destruction of the church of the Holy 
Sepulchre at Jerusalem (1010), a measure which helped to 
provoke the Crusades, but was only part of a general scheme 
for converting all Christians and Jews in his dominions to his 
own opinions by force. A more reputable expedient with the 
same end in view was the construction of a great library in 
Cairo, with ample provision for students; this was mpdelled on 
a similar institution at Bagdad. It formed part of the great 
palace of the Fatimites, and was intended to be the centre of 
their propaganda. At times, however, he ordered the destruction 
of all Christian churches in Egypt, and the banishment of all 
who did not adopt Islam. It is strange that in the midst of 
these persecutions he continued to employ Christians in high 
official positions. His system of persecution 'was not abandoned 
till in the last year of his reign (1020) he thought fit to claim 
divinity, a doctrine which is perpetuated by the Druses (q.v.), 
called after one DarazI, who preached the divinity of Hakim 
at the time; the violent opposition which this aroused among 
the Moslems probably led him to adopt milder measures towards 
his other subjects, and those who had been forcibly converted 
were permitted to return to their former religion and rebuild 
their places of worship. Whether his disappearance at the 
beginning of the year 102 1 was due to the resentment of his 
outraged subjects, or, as the historians say, to his sister's fear 
that he would bequeath the caliphate to a distant relative to 
the exclusion of his own son, will never be known. In spite 
of his caprices he appears to have shown competence in the 
management of external affairs; enterprises of pretenders both 
in Egypt and Syria were crushed with promptitude; and his 
name was at times mentioned in public worship in Aleppo and 

His son Abu'l-Iiasan 'Ali, who succeeded him with the title 
al-Zdhir li'izdz din alldh, was sixteen years of age at the time, 
and for four years his aunt Sitt al-Mulk acted as regent; she 
appears to have been an astute but utterly unscrupulous woman. 
After her death the caliph was in the power of various ministers, 
under whose management of affairs Syria was for a time lost to 
the Egyptian caliphate, and Egypt itself raided by the Syrian 
usurpers, of whom one, Salih b. Mirdas, succeeded in establishing 
a dynasty at Aleppo, which maintained itself after Syria and 
Palestine had been recovered for the Fatimites by Anushtakin 
al-Dizbarl at the battle of Ukhuwanah in 1029. His career is 
said to have been marked by some horrible caprices similar to 
those of his father. After a reign of nearly sixteen years he died 
of the plague. 

His successor, Abu Tamim Ma add, who reigned with the title 
al-Mostansir, was also an infant at the time of his accession, 
being little more than seven years of age. The power was largely 
in the hands of his mother, a negress, who promoted the interests 
of her kinsmen at court, where indeed even in Hakim's time they 
had been used as a counterpoise to the Maghribine and Turkish 
elements in the army. In the first years of this reign affairs 
were administered by the vizier al-Jarjara'I, by whose mismanage- 
ment Aleppo was lost to the Fatimites. At his death in 1044 
the chief influence passed into the hands of Abu Sa'd, a Jew, 
and the former master of the queen-mother, and at the end of 




four years he was assassinated at the instance of another Jew 
(Sadakah, perhaps Zedekiah, b. Joseph al-Falahl), whom he 
had appointed vizier. In this reign Mo'izz b. Badis, the 4th ruler 
of the dependent Zeirid dynasty which had ruled in the Maghrib 
since the migration of the Fatimite Mo'izz to Egypt, definitely 
abjured his allegiance (1049) and returned to Sunnite principles 
and subjection to the Bagdad caliphate. The Zeirids maintained 
Mahdia (see Algiers), while other cities of the Maghrib were 
colonized by Arab tribes sent thither by the Cairene vizier. 
This loss was more than compensated by the enrolment of 
Yemen among the countries which recognized the Fatimite 
caliphate through the enterprise of one 'Ali b. Mahommed al- 
Sulaihi, while owing to the disputes between the Turkish generals 
who claimed supremacy at Bagdad, Mostansir's name was men- 
tioned in public prayer at that metropolis on the 12 th of January 
1058, when a Turkish adventurer Basaslrl was for a time in 
power. The Egyptian court, chiefly owing to the jealousy of the 
vizier, sent no efficient aid to Basaslrl, and after a year Bagdad 
was retaken by the Seljuk Toghrul Beg, and the Abbasid caliph 
restored to his rights. In the following years the troubles in 
Egypt caused by the struggles between the Turkish and negro 
elements in Mostansir's army nearly brought the country into 
the dominion of the Abbasids. After several battles of various 
issue the Turkish commander Nasir addaula b. Hamdan got 
possession of Cairo, and at the end of 1068 plundered the caliph's 
palace; the valuable library which had been begun by Hakim 
was pillaged, and an accidental fire caused great destruction. 
The caliph and his family were reduced to destitution, and Nasir 
addaula began negotiations for restoring the name of the Abbasid 
caliph in public prayer; he was, however, assassinated before he 
could carry this out, and his assassin, also a Turk, appointed 
vizier. Mostansir then summoned to his aid Badr al-Jamali, an 
Armenian who had displayed competence in various posts which 
he had held in Syria, a^d this person early in 1074 arrived in 
Cairo accompanied by a bodyguard of Armenians; he contrived 
to massacre the chiefs of the party at the time in possession 
of power, and with the title Amir al-Juyush (" prince of the 
armies ") was given by Mostansir complete control of affairs. 
The period of internal disturbances, which had been accom- 
panied by famine and pestilence, had caused usurpers to spring 
up in all parts of Egypt, and Badr was compelled practically to 
reconquer the country. During this time, however, Syria was 
overrun by an invader in league with the Seljuk Malik Shah, and 
Damascus was permanently lost to the Fatimites; other cities 
were recovered by Badr himself or his officers. He rebuilt the 
walls of Cairo, of more durable material than that which had 
been employed by Jauhar — a measure rendered necessary partly 
by the growth of the metropolis, but also by the repeated sieges 
which it had undergone since the commencement of Fatimite 
rule. The time of Mostansir is otherwise memorable for the rise 
of the Assassins (q.v.), who at the first supported the claims of 
his eldest son Nizar to the succession against the youngest Ahmed, 
who was favoured by the family of Badr. When Badr died in 
1094 his influence was inherited by his son al-Afdal Shahinsbah, 
and this, at the death of Mostansir in the same year, was thrown 
in favour of Ahmed, who succeeded to the caliphate with the title 
al-Mosta'li billah. 

Mosta'li's succession was not carried through without an 
attempt on the part of Nizar to obtain his rights, the title which 

he chose being al-Mostafd lidin allah; for a time he 
Crusades, maintained himself in Alexandria, but the energetic 

measures of his brother soon brought the civil war to 
an end. The beginning of this reign coincided with the beginning 
of the Crusades, and al-Afdal made the fatal mistake of helping 
the Franks by rescuing Jerusalem from the Ortokids, thereby 
facilitating its conquest by the Franks in 1099. He endeavoured 
to retrieve his error by himself advancing into Palestine, but 
he was defeated in the neighbourhood of Ascalon, and compelled 
to retire to Egypt. Many of the Palestinian possessions of the 
Fatimites then successively fell into the hands of the Franks. 
After a reign of seven years Mosta'li died and the caliphate was 
given by al-Afdal to an infant son, aged five years at the time, 

DC. 4 

who was placed on the throne with the title al-Amir biahkdm 
allah, and for twenty years was under the tutelage of al-Afdal. 
He made repeated attempts to recover the Syrian and Pales- 
tinian cities from the Franks, but with poor success. In n 18 
Egypt was invaded by Baldwin I., who burned the gates and 
the mosques of Farama, and advanced to Tinnis, whence illness 
compelled him to retreat. In August 1 1 2 1 al-Afdal was assas- 
sinated in a street of Cairo, it is said, with the connivance of the 
caliph, who immediately began the plunder of his house, where 
fabulous treasures were said to be amassed. The vizier's offices 
were given to one of the caliph's creatures, Mahommed b. Fatik 
al-Bata'ihi, who took the title al-Ma'tnun. His external policy 
was not more fortunate than that of his predecessor, as he lost 
Tyre to the Franks, and a fleet equipped by him was defeated 
by the Venetians. On the 4th of October 1125 he with his 
followers was seized and imprisoned by order of the Caliph Amir, 
who was now resolved to govern by himself, with the assistance 
of only subordinate officials, of whom two were drawn from the 
Samaritan and Christian communities. The vizier was after- 
wards crucified with his five brothers. The caliph's personal 
government appears to have been incompetent, and to have been 
marked by extortions and other arbitrary measures. He was 
assassinated in October 1 1 29 by some members of the sect who 
believed in the claims of Nizar, son of Mostansir. 

The succeeding caliph, Abu'l-Maimun 'Abd al-Majld, who 
took the title al-fldfiz lidin allah, was not the son but the cousin 
of the deceased caliph, and of ripe age, being about fifty-eight 
years old at the time; for more than a year he was kept in 
prison by the new vizier, a son of al-Afdal, whom the army had 
placed in the post; but towards the end of 1131 this vizier fell 
by the hand of assassins, and the caliph was set free. The reign 
of Hafiz was disturbed by the factions of the soldiery, between 
which several battles took place, ending in the subjection of the 
caliph for a time to various usurpers, one of these being his own 
son Hasan, who had been provoked to rebel by the caliph 
nominating a younger brother as his successor. For some 
months the caliph was under this son's control; but the latter, 
who aimed at conciliating the people, speedily lost his popularity 
with the troops, and his father was able to get possession of his 
person and cause him to be poisoned (beginning of 113 5). 

His son Abu'l-Man$ur Ismd'U, who was seventeen years old at 
the time of Hafiz's death, succeeded him with the title al-Zdfir 
lia'dd allah. From this reign to the end of the Fatimite period we 
have the journals of two eminent men, Usamah b. Muniqdh and 
Umarah of Yemen, which throw light on the leading characters. 
The civil dissensions of Egypt were notorious at the time. The 
new reign began by an armed struggle between two commanders 
for the post of vizier , which in January 1 1 50 was decided in favour 
of the Amir Ibn Sallar. This vizier was presently assassinated 
by the direction of his stepson 'Abbas, who was raised to the 
vizierate in his place. This event was shortly followed by the 
loss to the Fatimites of Ascalon, the last place in Syria which 
they held; its loss was attributed to dissensions between the 
parties of which the garrison consisted. Four years later (April 
1 1 54) the caliph was murdered by his vizier 'Abbas, according 
to Usamah, because the caliph had suggested to his favourite, 
the vizier's son, to murder his father; and this was followed 
by a massacre of the brothers of Zafir, followed by the raising 
of his infant son Abu'l-Qdsim *Isd to the throne. 

The new caliph, who was not five years old, received the title 
al-Fd'iz bina$r allah, and was at first in the power of 'Abbas. 
The women of the palace, however, summoned to their aid Tala'i' 
b. Ruzzlk, prefect of Ushmunain, at whose arrival in Cairo the 
troops deserted 'Abbas, who was compelled to flee into Syria, 
taking his son and Usamah with him. "Abbas was killed by 
the Franks near Ascalon, his son sent in a cage to Cairo where 
he was executed, while Usamah escaped to Damascus, 

The infant Fa'iz, who had been permanently incapacitated 
by the scenes of violence which accompanied his accession, died 
in 1160. Tala'i' chose to succeed him a grandson of Zafir, who 
was nine years of age, and received the title al-'Adid lidin allah 
Tala'i", who had complete control of affairs, introduced the 

9 8 




practice of farming the taxes for periods of six months instead 
of a year, which led to great misery, as the taxes were demanded 
twice. His death was brought on by the rigour with which he 
treated the princesses, one of whom, with or without the con- 
nivance of the caliph, organized a plot for his assassination, and 
he died in September 1160. His son Ruzzlk inherited his post 
and maintained himself in it for more than a year, when another 
prefect of Upper Egypt, Shawar b. Mujlr, brought a force to 
Cairo, before which Ruzzlk fled, to be shortly afterwards captured 
and beheaded. SJiawar's entry into Cairo was at the beginning 
of 1 163; after nine months he was compelled to flee before 
another adventurer, an officer in the army named pirgham. 
Shawar's flight was directed to Damascus, where he was favour- 
ably received by the prince Nureddin, who sent with him to 
Cairo a force of Kurds under Asad al-din Shirguh. At the same 
time Egypt was invaded by the Franks, who raided and did much 
damage on the coast. Dirgham was defeated and killed, but 
a dispute then arose between Shawar and his Syrian allies for 
the possession of Egypt. Shawar, being unable to 
Invasion. C0 P e w ^ t ^ ie Syrians, demanded help of the Frankish 
king of Jerusalem Amalric (Amauri) I., who hastened 
to his aid with a large force, which united with Shawar's and 
besieged Shirguh in Bilbeis for three months; at the end of this 
time, owing to the successes of Nureddin in Syria, the Franks 
granted Shirguh a free passage with his troops back to 
Syria, on condition of Egypt being evacuated (October 1164). 
Rather more than two years later Shirguh persuaded Nured- 
din to put him at the head of another expedition to Egypt, 
which left Syria in January 1167, and, entering Egypt by the 
land route, crossed the Nile at Itfih (Atfih), and encamped at 
Giza; a Frankish' army hastened to Shawar's aid. At the battle 
of Babain (April nth, 1167) the allies were defeated by the forces 
commanded by Shirguh and his nephew Saladin, who was 
presently made prefect of Alexandria, which sur- 
rendered to Shirguh without a struggle. Saladin was 
soon besieged by the allies in Alexandria; but after seventy-five 
days the siege was raised, Shirguh having made a threatening 
movement on Cairo, where a Frankish garrison had been admitted 
by Shawar. Terms were then made by which both Syrians 
and Franks were to quit Egypt, though the garrison of Cairo 
remained; the hostile attitude of the Moslem population to 
this garrison led to another invasion at the beginning of 11 68 
by King Amalric, who after taking Bilbeis advanced to Cairo. 
The caliph, who up to this time appears to have left the adminis- 
tration to the viziers, now sent for Shirguh, whose speedy arrival 
in Egypt caused the Franks to withdraw. Reaching Cairo on 
the 6th of January 1169, he was soon able to get possession of 
Shawar's person, and after the prefect's execution, which 
happened some ten days later, he was appointed vizier by the 
caliph. After two months Shirguh died of indigestion (23rd of 
March 11 69), and the caliph appointed Saladin as successor to 
Shirguh; the new vizier professed to hold office as a deputy 
of Nureddin, whose name was mentioned in public worship after 
that of the caliph. By appropriating the fiefs of the Egyptian 
officers and giving them to his Kurdish followers he stirred up 
much ill-feeling, which resulted in a conspiracy, of which the 
object was to recall the Franks with the view of overthrowing 
the new regime; but this conspiracy was revealed by a traitor 
and crushed. Nureddin loyally aided his deputy in dealing 
with Frankish invasions of Egypt, but the anomaly by which he, ' 
being a Sunnite, was made in Egypt to recognize a Fatimite 
caliph could not long continue, and he ordered Saladin to weaken 
the Fatimite by every available means, and then substitute the 
name of the Abbasid for his in public worship. Saladin and his 
ministers were at first afraid lest this step might give rise to 
disturbances among the people; but a stranger undertook to 
risk it on the 17th of September 1171, and the following Friday 
it was repeated by official order; the caliph himself died during 
the interval, and it is uncertain whether he ever heard of his 
deposition. The last of the Fatimite caliphs was not quite 
twenty-one years old at the time of his death. 

(5) Ayyubite Period. — Saladin by the advice of his chief 

Nureddin cashiered the Fatimite judges and took steps to 
encourage the study of orthodox theology and jurisprudence 
in Egypt by the foundation of colleges and chairs. On the 
death of the ex-caliph he was confirmed in the prefecture of 
Egypt as deputy of Nureddin; and on the decease of the latter 
in 1174 (12th of April) he took the title sultan, so that with this 
year the Ayyubite period of Egyptian history properly begins. 
During the whole of it Damascus rather more than Cairo counted 
as the metropolis of the empire. The Egyptian army, which was 
motley in character, was disbanded by the new sultan, whose 
troops were Kurds. Though he did not build a new metropolis 
he fortified Cairo with the addition of a citadel, and had plans 
made for a new wall to enclose both it and the double city; this 
latter plan was never completed, but the former was executed 
after his death, and from this time till the French occupation 
of Egypt the citadel of Cairo was the political centre of the 
country. It was in n 83 that Saladin's rule over Egypt and 
North Syria was consolidated. Much of Saladin's time was 
spent in Syria, and his famous wars with the Franks belong to 
the history of the Crusades and to his personal biography. 
Egypt was largely governed by his favourite Karakush, who lives 
in popular legend as the " unjust judge," though he does not 
appear to have deserved that title. 

Saladin at his death divided his dominions between his sons, 
of whom 'Othman succeeded to Egypt with the title Malik al- 
Aziz t Imal al-ain. The division was not satisfactory to the 
heirs, and after three years (beginning of 1196) the Egyptian 
sultan conspired with his uncle Malik al-'Adil to deprive Saladin's 
son al-Afdal of Damascus, which had fallen to his lot. The war 
between the brothers was continued with intervals of peace, 
during which al-'Adil repeatedly changed sides: eventually he 
with al-'Aziz besieged and took Damascus, and sent al-Afdal 
to Sarkhad, while al-'Adil remained in possession of Damascus. 
On the death of al-'Aziz on the 29th of November 1198 in 
consequence of a hunting accident, his infant son Mahommed 
was raised to the throne with the title Malik al-Man^ur Napr 
al-din, and his uncle al-Afdal sent for from Sarkhad to take the 
post of regent or Atabeg. So soon as al-Afdal had got possession 
of his nephew's person, he started on an expedition for the 
recovery of Damascus: al-'Adil not only frustrated this, but 
drove him back to Egypt, where on the 25th of January 1200 a 
battle was fought between the armies of the two at Bilbeis, 
resulting in the defeat of al-Afdal, who was sent back to 
Sarkhad, while al-'Adil assumed the regency, for which after a 
few months he substituted the sovereignty, causing his nephew 
to be deposed. He reigned under the title Malik al- Adil Saif 
al-din. His name was Abu Bakr. 1 

Though the early years of his reign were marked by numerous 
disasters, famine, pestilence and earthquake, of which the second 
seems to have been exceedingly serious, he reunited under his 
sway the whole of the empire which had belonged to his brother, 
and his generals conquered for him parts of Mesopotamia and 
Armenia, and in 121 5 he got possession of Yemen. He followed 
the plan of dividing his empire between his sons, the eldest 
Mahommed, called Malik, being his viceroy in Egypt, 
while al-Mu'azzam 'Isa governed Syria, al-Ashraf Musa his 
eastern and al-Malik al-Auhad Ayyiib his northern possessions. 
His attitude towards the Franks was at the first peaceful, but 
later in his reign he was compelled to adopt more strenuous 
measures. His death occurred at Alikin (12 18), a village near 
Damascus, while the Franks were besieging Damietta — the first 
operation of the Fifth Crusade — which was defended by al-Kamil,- 
to whom his father kept sending reinforcements. The efforts of 
al-Kamil after his accession to the independent sovereignty 
were seriously hindered by the endeavour of an amir named 
Ahmed b. Mashtub to depose him and appoint in his place a 
brother called al-Fa'iz Sabiq al-din Ibrahim: this attempt was 
frustrated by the timely interposition of al-Mu'azzam 'Isa, who 
came to Egypt to aid his brother in February 12 19, and com- 
pelled al-Fa'iz to depart for Mosul. After a siege of sixteen and 
a half months Damietta was taken by the Franks on Tuesday 
the 6th of November 12 19; al-Kamil thereupon proclaimed the 




Jihad, and was joined at his fortified camp, afterwards the site 
of Mansura, by troops from various parts of Egypt, Syria and 
Mesopotamia, including the forces of his brothers Tsa and 
Musa. With these allies, and availing himself of the advantages 
offered by the inundation of the Nile, al-Kamil was able to cut 
off both the advance and the retreat of the invaders, and on 
the 31st of August 1221 a peace was concluded, by which the 
Franks evacuated Egypt. 

For some years the dominions of al-'Adil remained divided 
between his sons: when the affairs of Egypt were settled, 
al-Kamil determined to reunite them as before, and to that end 
brought on the Sixth Crusade. Various cities in Palestine and 
Syria were yielded to Frederick II. as the price of his help against 
the son of Mu'azzam "Isa, who reigned at Damascus with the 
title of Malik al-Nasir. About 1 231-32 Kamil led a confederacy 
of Ayyubite princes against the Seljuk Kaikobad into Asia Minor, 
but his allies mistrusted him and victory rested with Kaikobad 
(see Seljuks) . Before Kamil's death he was mentioned in public 
prayer at Mecca as lord of Mecca (Hejaz), Yemen, Zabld, Upper 
and Lower Egypt, Syria and Mesopotamia. 

At his death (May 8th, 1238) at Damascus, hisson Abu Bakr 
was appointed to succeed with the title Malik al-'Adil Saif al-din; 
but his elder brother Malik al-Salih Najm al-din Ayyiib, having 
got possession of Damascus, immediately started for Egypt, 
with the view of adding that country to his dominions: mean- 
while his uncle Isma'il, prince of Hamath, with the prince of 
Horns, seized Damascus, upon hearing which the troops of 
Najm al-din deserted him at Nablus, when he fell into the hands 
of Malik al-Nasir, prince of Kerak, who carried him off to that 
city and kept him a prisoner there for a time; after which he 
was released and allowed to return to Nablus. On the 31st of 
May 1240 the new sultan was arrested at Bilbeis by his own 
amirs, who sent for Najm al-din to succeed him; and on the 19th 
of June of the same year Najm al-din entered Cairo as sultan, 
and imprisoned his brother in the citadel, where he died in 1248. 
Meanwhile in 1244 Jerusalem had been finally wrested from 
the Franks. The administration of Najm al-din is highly praised 
by Ibn Khallikan, who lived under it. He made large purchases 
of slaves (Mamelukes) for his army, and when the inhabitants of 
Cairo complained of their lawlessness, he built barracks for them 
on the island of Roda (Rauda), whence they were called Bahri 
or Nile Mamelukes, which became the name of the first dynasty 
that originated from them. Much of his time was spent in cam- 
paigns in Syria, where the other Ayyubites allied themselves 
against him with the Crusaders, whereas he accepted the services 
of the Khwarizmians: eventually he succeeded in recovering 
most of the Syrian cities. His name is commemorated by the 
town of Salihia, which he built in the year 1 246 as a resting-place 
for his armies on their marches through the desert from Egypt 
to Palestine. In 1249 he was recalled from the siege of Homs 
by the news of the invasion of Egypt by Louis IX. (the Seventh 
Crusade), and in spite of illness he hastened to Ushmum Tanna, 
in the neighbourhood of Damietta, which he provisioned for a 
siege. Damietta was taken on the 6th of June 1249, owing to 
the desertion of his post by the commander Fakhr ud-dln, and 
the Banu Kinanah, to whom the defence of the place had been 
entrusted : fifty-four of their chieftains were afterwards executed 
by the sultan for this proceeding. On the 22nd of November 
the sultan died of disease at Mansura, but his death was 
carefully concealed by the amirs Lajin and Aktai, acting in 
concert with the Queen Shajar al-durr, till the arrival from 
Syria of the heir to the throne, Turdnshah, who was proclaimed 
some four months later. At the battle of Fariskur, 6th of April 
1250, the invaders were utterly routed and the French king fell 
into the hands of the Egyptian sultan. The Egyptian authorities 
now resolved to raze Damietta, which, however, was rebuilt 
shortly after. The sultan, who himself had had no share in the 
victory, advanced after it from Mansura to Fariskur, where his 
conduct became menacing to the amirs who had raised him to 
the throne, and to Shajar al-durr; she in revenge organized an 
attack upon him which was successful, fire, water, and steel 
contributing to his end. 

(6) Period of Bahri Mamelukes. — The dynasties that succeeded 
the Ayyubites till the conquest of Egypt by the Ottomans bore 
the title Dynasties of the Turks, but are more often called 
Mameluke dynasties, because the sultans were drawn from the 
enfranchised slaves who constituted the court, and officered 
the army. The family of the fourth of these sovereigns, Ka'a'un 
(Qala'un), reigned for no years, but otherwise no sultan was 
able to found a durable dynasty: after the death of a sultan 
he was usually succeeded by an infant son, who after a short 
time was dethroned by a new usurper. 

After the death of the Sultan Turanshah, his step-mother at 
first was raised to the vacant throne, when she committed the 
administration of affairs to the captain of the retainers, Aibek; 
but the rule of a queen caused scandal to the Moslem world, and 
Shajar al-durr gave way to this sentiment by marrying Aibek 
and allowing the title sultan to be conferred on him instead of 
herself. For policy's sake, however, Aibek nominally associated 
with himself on the throne a scion of the Ayyubite house, Malik 
al-Ashraf Musa, who died in prison (1252 or 1254). Aibek 
meanwhile immediately became involved in war with the 
Ayyubite Malik al-Nasir, who was in possession of Syria, with 
whom the caliph induced him after some indecisive actions 
to make peace: he then successfully quelled a mutiny of Mame- 
lukes, whom he compelled to take refuge with the last Abbasid 
caliph Mostasim in Bagdad and elsewhere. On the 10th of April 
1257 Aibek was murdered by his wife Shajar al-durr, who was 
indignant at his asking for the hand of another queen: but 
Aibek's followers immediately avenged his death, placing on 
the throne his infant son Malik al-Mansur, who, however, was 
almost immediately displaced by his guardian Kotuz, on the 
plea that the Mongol danger necessitated the presence of a grown 
man at the head of affairs. In 1260 the Syrian kingdom of al- 
Nasir was destroyed by Hulaku (Hulagu), the great Mongol 
chief, founder of the Ilkhan Dynasty (see Mongols) , who, having 
finally overthrown the caliph of Bagdad (see Caliphate, sect. c. 
§37), also despatched a threatening letter to Kotuz; but later 
in the same year Syria was invaded by Kotuz, who defeated 
Hulagu's lieutenant at the battle of 'Ain Jalut (3rd of September 
1260), in consequence of which event the Syrian cities all rose ' 
against the Mongols, and the Egyptian sultan became master 
of the country with the exception of such places as were still 
held by the Crusaders. 

Before Kotuz had reigned a year he was murdered at Salihia 
by his lieutenant Bibars (October 23rd, 1260), who was piqued, 
it is said, at the governorship of Aleppo being with- 
held from him. The sovereignty was seized by this Bibars. 
person with the title of Malik al-Qdhir, presently 
altered to al-Zahir. He had originally been a slave of Malik 
al-Salih, had distinguished himself at the battle after which 
Louis IX. was captured, and had helped to murder Turanshah. 
Sultan Bibars, who proved to be one of the most competent of 
the Bahri Mamelukes, made Egypt the centre of the Moslem 
world by re-establishing in theory the Abbasid caliphate, which 
had lapsed through the taking of Bagdad by Hulagu, followed 
by the execution of the caliph. Bibars recognized the claim of a 
certain Abu'l-Qasim Ahmed to be the son of Zahir, the 35th 
Abbasid caliph, and installed him as Commander of the Faithful 
at Cairo with the title al-Mostansir billdh. Mostansir 
then proceeded to confer on Bibars the title sultan, Caliphate 
and to address to him a homily, explaining his duties, revived. 
This document is preserved in the MS. life of Bibars, 
and translated by G. Weil. The sultan appears to have con- 
templated restoring the new caliph to the throne of Bagdad: 
the force, however, which he sent with him for the purpose of 
reconquering Irak was quite insufficient for the purpose, and 
Mostansir was defeated and slain. This did not prevent Bibars 
from maintaining his policy of appointing an Abbasid for the 
purpose of conferring legitimacy on himself; but he encouraged 
no further attempts at re-establishing the Abbasids at Bagdad, 
and his principle, adopted by successive sultans, was that the 
caliph should not leave Cairo except when accompanying the 
sultan on an expedition. 





The reign of Bibars was spent largely in successful wars against 
the Crusaders, from whom he took many cities, notably Safad, 
Caesarea and Antioch; the Armenians, whose territory he re- 
peatedly invaded, burning their capital Sis; and the Seljukids 
of Asia Minor. He further reduced the Isma'ilians or Assassins, 
whose existence as a community lasted on in Syria after it had 
nearly come to an end in Persia. He made Nubia tributary, 
therein extending Moslem arms farther south than they had 
been extended by any previous sultan. His authority was before 
his death recognized all over Syria (with the exception of the few 
cities still in the power of the Franks), over Arabia, with the 
exception of Yemen, on the Euphrates from Birah to Kerkesia 
(Circesium) on the Chaboras (Khabur), whilst the amirs of 
north-western Africa were tributary to him. His successes were 
won not only by military and political ability, but also by the 
most absolute unscrupulousness, neither flagrant perjury nor 
the basest treachery being disdained. He was the first sultan 
who acknowledged the equal authority of the four schools of law, 
and appointed judges belonging to each in Egypt and Syria; 
he was thus able to get his measures approved by one school when 
condemned by another. 

On the ist of July 1277 Bibars died, and the events that 
followed set an example repeatedly followed during the period 
of the Mamelukes. The sultan's son Malik al-Sa'id 
ascended the throne; but within little more than two 
years he was compelled to abdicate in favour of his father-in- 
law Kala'un, a Mameluke who had risen high in the former 
sovereign's service. The accession of Kala'un was also marked 
by an attempt on the part of the governor of Damascus to form 
Syria into an independent kingdom, an attempt frequently 
imitated on similar occasions. The Syrian forces were defeated 
at the battle of Jazurah (April 26th, 1280) and Kala'un re- 
sumed possession of the country; but the disaffected Syrians 
entered into relations with the Mongols, who proceeded to invade 
Syria, but were finally defeated by Kala'un on the 30th of 
October 1281 under the walls of Horns (Emesa). 

The conversion to Islam of Nikudar Ahmad, the third of the 
Ilkhan rulers of Persia, and the consequent troubles in the western 
• Mongol empire, let to a suspension of hostilities between Egypt 
and the Ilkhans (see Persia: History, § B), though the latter 
did not cease to agitate in Europe for a renewal of the Crusades, 
with little result. Kala'un, without pursuing any career of active 
conquest, did much to consolidate his dominions, and especially 
to extend Egyptian commerce, for which purpose he started 
passports enabling merchants to travel with safety through 
Egypt and Syria as far as India. After the danger from the 
Mongols had ceased, however, Kala'un directed his energies 
towards capturing the last places that remained in the hands 
of the Franks, and proceeded to take Markab, Latakia, and 
Tripoli (April 26th, 1289). In 1290 he planned an attack on 
Acre, but died (November 10th) in the middle of all his pre- 
parations. Under Kala'un we first hear of the Burjite Mame- 
lukes, who owe their name to the citadel (Burj) of Cairo, where 
37c o of the whole number of 12,000 Mamelukes maintained 
by this sovereign were quartered. He also set an example, 
frequently followed, of the practice of dismissing all non-Moslems 
from government posts: this was often done by his successors 
with the view of conciliating the Moslems, but it was speedily 
found that the services of the Jewish and Christian clerks were 
again required. He further founded a hospital for clinical 
research on a scale formerly unknown. 

Kala'un was followed by his son Khalil {Malik al-Ashraf 
Salah al-diri), who carried out his father's policy of driving the 
Franks out of Syria and Palestine, and proceeded with the siege 
of Acre, which he took (May 18th, 1291) after a siege of forty- 
three days. The capture and destruction of this important 
place were followed by the capture of Tyre, Sidon, Haifa, Athlit 
and Beirut, and thus Syria was cleared of the Crusaders. He 
also planned an expedition against the prince of Lesser Armenia, 
which was averted by the surrender of Behesna, Marash and Tell 
Hamdun. The disputes between his favourite, the vizier Ibn 
al-Sa'lus, and his viceroy Baidara. led to his being murdered by 

the latter (December 12th, 1293), who was proclaimed sultan, 
but almost immediately fell a victim to the vengeance of the 
deceased sultan's party, who placed a younger son of Kala'un, 
Mahommed Malik al-Nasir, on the throne. This 
prince had the singular fortune of reigning three times, al-Nasir. 
being twice dethroned: he was first installed on the 
14th of December 1293, when he was nine years old, and the 
affairs of the kingdom were undertaken by a cabinet, consisting 
of a vizier ("Alam al-dln Sinjar), a viceroy (Kitboga), a war 
minister (Husam al-dln Lajln al-Rumi), a prefect of the palace 
(Rokneddin Bibars Jashengir) and a secretary of state (Rok- 
neddin Bibars Mansuri). This cabinet naturally split into rival 
camps, in consequence of which Kitboga, himself a Mongol, 
with the aid of other Mongols who had come into Egypt after 
the battle of Horns, succeeded in ousting his rivals, and presently, 
with the aid of the surviving assassins of the former sultan, 
compelling Malik al-Nasir to abdicate inhis favour (December ist, 
1294). The usurper was, however, able to maintain himself for 
two years only, famine and pestilence which prevailed in Egypt 
and Syria during his reign rendering him unpopular, while his 
arbitrary treatment of the amirs also gave offence. He was 
dethroned in 1296, and one of the murderers of Khalil, Husam 
al-dln Lajln, son-in-law of the sultan Bibars and formerly 
governor of Damascus, installed in his palace (November 26th, 
1296). It had become the practice of the Egyptian sultans to 
bestow all offices of importance on their own freedmen (Mame- 
lukes) to the exclusion of the older amirs, whom they could not 
trust so well, but who in turn became still more disaffected. 
Husam al-din fell a victim to the jealousy of the older amirs 
whom he had incensed by bestowing arbitrary power on his own 
Mameluke Mengutimur, and was murdered on the 
16th of January 1299. His short reign was marked wars! 
by some fairly successful incursions into Armenia, 
and the recovery of the fortresses Marash and Tell Hamdun, 
which had been retaken by the Armenians. He also instituted 
a fresh survey and division of land in Egypt and Syria, which 
occasioned much discontent. After his murder the deposed 
sultan Malik al-Nasir, who had been living in retirement at 
Kerak, was recalled by the army and reinstated as sultan in 
Cairo (February 7th, 1299), though still only fourteen years of 
age, so that public affairs were administered not by him, but by 
Salar the viceroy, and Bibars Jashengir, prefect of the palace. 
The 7th Ilkhan, Ghazan Mahmud, took advantage of the disorder 
in the Mameluke empire to invade Syria in the latter half of 1299, 
when his forces inflicted a severe defeat on those of the new sultan, 
and seized several cities, including the capital Damascus, of 
which, however, they were unable to storm the citadel; in 1300, 
when a fresh army was collected in Egypt, the Mongols evacuated 
Damascus and made no attempt to secure their other conquests. 
The fear of further Mongolian invasion led to the imposition of 
fresh taxes in both Egypt and Syria, including one of 33% on 
rents, which occasioned many complaints. The invasion did not 
take place till 1303, when at the battle of Marj al-Saffar (April 
20th) the Mongols were defeated. This was the last time that 
the Ilkhans gave the Egyptian sultans serious trouble; and in 
the letter written in the sultan's name to the Ilkhan announcing 
the victory, the former suggested that the caliphate of Bagdad 
should be restored to the titular Abbasid caliph who had accom- 
panied the Egyptian expedition, a suggestion which does not 
appear to have led to any actual steps being taken. The fact 
that the Mongols were in ostensible alliance with Christian 
princes led to a renewal by the sultan of the ordinances against 
Jews and Christians which had often been abrogated, as often 
renewed and again fallen into abeyance; and their renewal led 
to missions from various Christian princes requesting milder 
terms for their co-religionists. The amirs Salar and Bibars having 
usurped the whole of the sultan's authority, he, after some futile 
attempts to free himself of them, under the pretext of pilgrimage 
to Mecca, retired in March 1309 to Kerak, whence he sent his 
abdication to Cairo; in consequence of which, on the 5th of 
April 1309, Bibars Jashengir was proclaimed sultan, with the 
title Malik al-Mozaffar. This prince was originally a freedman 




of Kala'un, and was the first Circassian who ascended the throne 
of Egypt. Before the year was out the new sultan had been 
rendered unpopular by the occurrence of a famine, and Malik 
al-Nasir was easily able to induce the Syrian amirs to return to 
his allegiance, in consequence of which Bibars in his turn abdi- 
cated, and Malik al-Nasir re-entered Cairo as sovereign on the 
5th of March 13 10. He soon found the means to execute both 
Bibars and Salar, while other amirs who had been eminent under 
the former regime fled to the Mongols. The relations between 
their Ilkhan and the Egyptian sultan continued strained, and the 
8th Ilkhan Oeljeitu (1304-1316) addressed letters to Philip the 
Fair and the English king Edward I. (answered by Edward II. 
in 1307), desiring aid against Malik al-Nasir; and for many 
years the courts of the sultan and the Ilkhan continued to be the 
refuge of malcontents from the other kingdom. Finally in 1322 
terms of peace and alliance were agreed on between the sultan 
and Abu Sa'Id the 9th Ilkhan. The sultan also entered into 
relations with the Mongols of the Golden Horde and in 1319 
married a daughter of the reigning prince Uzbeg Khan (see 
Mongols: Golden Horde). Much of Malik al-Nasir's third 
administration was spent in raids into Nubia, where he en- 
deavoured to set up a creature of his own as sovereign, in 
attempts at bringing the Bedouins of south-eastern Egypt into 
subordination, and in persecuting the Nosairls, whose heresy 
became formidable about this time. Like other Egyptian 
sultans he made considerable use of the Assassins, 124 of whom 
were sent by him into Persia to execute Kara Sonkor, at one 
time governor of Damascus, and one of the murderers of Malik 
al-Ashraf; but they were all outwitted by the exile, who was 
finally poisoned by the Ilkhan in recompense for a similar service 
rendered by the Egyptian sultan. For a time Malik al-Nasir 
was recognized as suzerain in north Africa, the Arabian Irak, 
and Asia Minor, but he was unable to make any permanent 
conquests in any of these countries. He brought Medina, which 
had previously been governed by independent sherlfs, to acknow- 
ledge his authority. His diplomatic relations were more extensive 
than those of any previous sultan, and included Bulgarian, 
Indian, and Abyssinian potentates, as well as the pope, the king 
of Aragon and the king of France. He appears to have done 
his utmost to protect his Christian subjects, incurring thereby 
the reproaches of the more fanatical Moslems, especially in the 
year 1320 when owing to incendiarism in Cairo there was danger 
of a general massacre of the Christian population. His internal 
administration was marked by gross extravagance, which led 
to his viziers being forced to practise violent extortion for which 
they afterwards suffered. He paid considerable attention to 
sheep-breeding and agriculture, and by a canal which he had 
dug from Fuah to Alexandria not only assisted commerce but 
brought 100,000 feddans under cultivation. His taste for 
building and street improvement led to the beautifying of Cairo, 
and his example was followed by the governors of other great 
cities in the empire, notably Aleppo and Damascus. He paid 
exceptionally high prices for Mamelukes, many of whom were 
sold by their Mongol parents to his agents, and accustomed 
them to greater luxury than was usual under his predecessors. 
In 1315 he instituted a survey of Egypt, and of the twenty-four 
parts into which it was divided ten were assigned to the sultan 
and fourteen to the amirs and the army. He took occasion to 
abolish a variety of vexatious imposts, and the new budget fell 
less heavily on the Christians than the old. Among the literary 
ornaments of his reign was the historian and geographer Isma'Il 
Abulfeda (q.v.), to whom Malik al-Nasir restored the government 
of Hamath, which had belonged to his ancestors, and even gave 
the title sultan. He died on the 7th of June 1341. The son, 
Abu Bakr, to whom he had left the throne, was able to maintain 
himself only a few months on it, being compelled to abdicate 
on the 4th of August 1341 in favour of his infant brother Kuchuk; 
the revolution was brought about by Kausun, a powerful Mame- 
luke of the preceding monarch. This person's authority was, 
however, soon overthrown by a party formed by the Syrian 
prefects, and on the nth of January Malik al-N&sir Ahmad, an 
elder son of the former sultan of the same title, was installed 

in his place, though he did not actually arrive in Cairo till the 
6th of November, being unwilling to leave Kerak, where he had 
been living in retirement. After a brief sojourn in Cairo he 
speedily returned thither, thereby forfeiting his throne, which 
was conferred by the amirs on his brother Ismail al-Malik al- 
Salih (June 27th, 1342). This sultan was mainly occupied 
during his short reign with besieging and taking Kerak, whither 
Ahmad had taken refuge, and himself died on the 3rd of August 
i34Si when another son of Malik al-Nasir, named Sha'ban, was 
placed on the throne. The constant changes of sultan led to 
great disorder in the provinces, and many of the 
subject principalities endeavoured to shake off the ^f c/ {? e .°( 
Egyptian yoke. Sha ban proved no more competent power. 
than his predecessors, being given to open debauchery 
and profligacy, an example followed by his amirs; and fresh 
discontent led to his being deposed by the Syrian amirs, when 
his brother Hajji was proclaimed sultan in his place (September 
1 8th, 1346). Hiljjl was deposed and killed on the 10th of 
December 1347, and another infant son of Malik al-Na$ir, Hasan, 
who took his father's title, was proclaimed, the real power being 
shared by three amirs, Sheikhun, Menjek and Yelbogha Arus. 
During this reign (1348-1349) Egypt was visited by the " Black 
Death," which is said' to have carried off 000,000 of the inhabit- 
ants of Cairo and to have raged as far south as Assuan. Towards 
the beginning of 1351 the sultan got rid of his guardians and 
attempted to rule by himself; but though successful in war, his 
arbitrary measures led to his being dethroned on the 21st of 
August 1351 by the amirs, who proclaimed his brother Salih with 
the title of Malik al-Salih. He too was only fourteen years of 
age. The power was contested for by various groups of amirs, 
whose struggles ended with the deposition of the sultan Salih 
on the 20th of October 1354, and the reinstatement of his brother 
Hasan, who was again dethroned on the 16th of March 1361 
by an amir Yelbogha, whom he had offended, and who, having 
got possession of the sultan's person, murdered him. The next 
day a son of the dethroned sultan Hajji was proclaimed sultan 
with the title Malik al-Mansur. On the 29th of May 1363 this 
sultan was also dethroned on the ground of incompetence, and 
his place was given to another grandson of Malik al-Nasir, 
Sha'bdn, son of Hosain, then ten years old. The amir Yelbogha 
at first held all real power and is said to have acquired a degree 
of authority which no other subject ever held. During this reign, 
on the 8th of October 1365, a landing was effected at Alexandria 
by a Frankish fleet under Peter I. of Cyprus, which presently 
took possession of the city; the .Franks were speedily compelled 
to embark again after plundering the city, for which compen- 
sation was afterwards demanded by Yelbogha from the Christian 
population of Egypt and Syria. Alexandria was further made 
the seat of a viceroy, having previously only had a prefect. 
On the nth of December 1366 Yelbogha was himself attacked 
by the sultan, captured and slain. His successor in the office 
of first minister was a mere tool in the hands of his Mamelukes, 
who compelled him to institute and depose governors, &c, at 
their pleasure. In 1374 the Egyptians raided Cilicia and cap- 
tured Leo VI., prince of Lesser Armenia, which now became an 
Egyptian province with a Moslem governor. On the 15th of 
March 1377 the sultan was murdered by the Mamelukes, owing 
to his refusing a largess of money which they demanded. The 
infant son of the late sultan 'All, a lad of eight years, was pro- 
claimed with the title Malik al-Mansur; the power was in the 
hands of the ministers Kartai and Ibek, the latter of whom over- 
threw the former with the aid of his own Mamelukes, Berekeh 
and Barkuk. An insurrection in Syria which spread to Egypt 
presently caused the fall of Ibek, and led to the occupation 
of the highest posts by the Circassian freedmen Berekeh and 
Barkuk, of whom the latter ere long succeeded in ousting the 
former and usurping the sultan's place; on the 19th of May 
1381, when the sultan 'All died, his place was given to an infant 
brother Hajji, but on the 26th of November 1382, Barkuk set 
this child aside and had himself proclaimed sultan (with the title 
Malik al- Zahir), thereby ending the Bahrl dynasty and commenc- 
ing that of the Circassians. For a short period, however, Hajji 




Tlmur In 

was restored, when on the ist of June 1389 Cairo was taken by 
Yelbogha, governor of Damascus, and Barkuk expelled; Hajji 
reigned at first under the guardianship of Yelbogha, who was 
then overthrown by Mintash; Barkuk, who had been relegated 
to Kerak, succeeded in again forming a party, and in a battle 
fought at Shakhab, January 1390, succeeded in gaining posses- 
sion of the person of the sultan Hajji, and on the 21st of January 
he was again proclaimed sultan in Cairo. 

(7) Period of Burji Mamelukes. — Barkuk presently entered 
into relations with the Ottoman sultan Bayezld I., and by 
slaying an envoy of Timur incurred the displeasure of the world- 
conqueror; and in 1394 led an army into Syria with the view 
of restoring the Jelairid Ilkhan Ahmad to Bagdad (as Barkiik's 
vassal), and meeting the Mongol invasion. Barkuk, however, 
died (June 20th, 1399) before Timur had time to invade Syria. 
According to the custom that had so often proved disastrous, 
a young son of Barkuk, Faraj, then aged thirteen, was appointed 
sultan under the guardianship of two amirs. Incursions were 
immediately made by the Ottoman sultan into the territory of 
Egyptian vassals at Derendeh and Albistan (Ablestin), and 
Malatia was besieged by his forces. Timur, who was at this 
time beginning his campaign against Bayezld, turned his atten- 
tion first to Syria, and on the 30th of October 1400 
defeated the Syrian amirs near Aleppo, and soon got 
possession of the city and the citadel. He proceeded 
to take Hamah, Homs (Emesa) and other towns, and on the 
20th of December started for Damascus. An endeavour was 
made by the Egyptian sultan to relieve Damascus, but the news 
of an insurrection in Cairo caused him to retire and leave the 
place to its fate. In the first three months of 1401 the whole 
of Northern Syria suffered from Timur's marauders. In the 
following year (September 29th, 1402) Timur who had in the 
interval inflicted a crushing defeat on the Ottoman sultan, sent 
to demand homage from Faraj, and his demand was readily 
granted, together with the delivery of the princes who had sought 
refuge from Timur in Egyptian territory. The death of Timur 
in February 1405 restored Egyptian authority in Syria, which, 
however, became a rendezvous for all who were discontented 
with the rule of Faraj and his amirs, and two months after 
Timur's death was in open rebellion against Faraj. Although 
Faraj succeeded in defeating the rebels, he was compelled by 
insubordination on the part of his Circassian Mamelukes to 
abdicate (September 20th, 1405), when his brother Abd al-aziz 
was proclaimed with the title Malik al-Mansiir; after two 
months this prince was deposed, and Faraj, who had been in 
hiding, recalled. Most of his reign was, however, occupied 
with revolts on the part of the Syrian amirs, to quell whom he 
repeatedly visited Syria; the leaders of the rebels were the 
amirs Newruz and Sheik MahmudI, afterwards sultan. Owing 
to disturbances and misgovernment the population of Egypt 
and Syria is said to have shrunk to a third in his time, and he 
offended public sentiment not only by debauchery, but by 
having his image stamped on his coins. On the 23rd of May 
141 2, after being defeated and shut up in Damascus, he was 
compelled by Sheik MahmudI to abdicate, and an Abbasid 
caliph, Mosta'in, was proclaimed sultan, only to be forced to 
abdicate on the 6th of November of the same year in Sheik's 
favour, who took the title Malik al-Muayyad, his colleague 
Newruz having been previously sent to Syria, where he was to be 
autocrat by the terms of their agreement. In the struggle 
which naturally followed between the two, Newruz was shut up 
in Damascus, defeated and slain. Sheik himself invaded Asia 
Minor and forced the Turkoman states to acknowledge his 
suzerainty. After the sultan's return they soon rebelled, but 
were again brought into subjection by Sheik's son Ibrahim; 
his victories excited the envy of his father, who is said to have 
poisoned him. Sheik himself died a few months after the 
decease of his son (January 13th, 1421), and another infant son, 
Ahmad, was proclaimed with the title Malik al-Mozajfar, the 
proclamation being followed by the usual dissensions between 
the amirs, ending with the assumption of supreme power by the 
amir Tatar, who, after defeating his rivals, on the 29th of August 

1421 had himself proclaimed sultan with the title Malik al-Zahir. 
This usurper, however, died on the 30th of November of the 
same year, leaving the throne to an infant son Mohammed, who 
was given the title Malik al-Salih ; the regular intrigues between 
the amirs followed, leading to his being dethroned on the following 
ist of April 1422, when the amir appointed to be his tutor, 
Barsbai, was proclaimed sultan with the title Malik al-Ashraf. 
This sultan avenged the attacks on Alexandria re- 
peatedly made by Cyprian ships, for he sent a fleet 2^™ wt % 
which burned Limasol, and another which took powers. 
Famagusta (August 4th, 1425), but failed in the 
endeavour to annex the island permanently. An expedition 
sent in the following year (1426) succeeded in taking captive the 
king of Cyprus, who was brought to Cairo and presently released 
for a ransom of 200,000 dinars, on condition of acknowledging 
the suzerainty of the Egyptian sultan and paying him an annual 
tribute. Barsbai appears to have excelled his predecessors 
in the invention of devices for exacting money from merchants 
and pilgrims, and in juggling with the exchange. This led to a 
naval demonstration on the part of the Venetians, who secured 
better terms for their trade, and to the seizure of Egyptian 
vessels by the king of Aragon and the prince of Catalonia. In 
a census made during Barsbai's reign, it was found that the 
total number of towns and villages in Egypt had sunk to 2170, 
whereas in the 4th century a.h. it had stood at 10,000. Much 
of Barsbai's attention was occupied with raids into Asia Minor, 
where the Dhu '1-Kadiri Turkomans frequently rebelled, and 
with wars against Kara Yelek, prince of Amid, and Shah Rokh, 
son of Timur. Barsbai died on the 7th of June 1438. In accord- 
ance with the custom of his predecessors he left the throne to a 
son still in his minority, Abul-Mahasin Yusuf, who took the title 
Malik al- Aziz, but as usual after a few months he was displaced 
by the regent Jakmak, who on the 9th of September 1438 was 
proclaimed sultan with the title Malik al-Zahir. In the years 
1442-1444 this sultan sent three fleets against Rhodes, where the 
third effected a landing, but was unable to make any permanent 
conquest. In consequence of a lengthy illness Jakmak abdicated 
on the ist of February 1453, when his son 'Othman was pro- 
claimed sultan with the title Malik al-Mansiir. Though not a 
minor, he had no greater success than the sons of the usurpers 
who preceded him, being dethroned after six weeks (March 15th, 
1453) in favour of the amir Inal al-'Ala'i, who took the title 
Malik al-Ashraf. His reign was marked by friendly relations 
with the Ottoman sultan Mahommed II., whose capture of 
Constantinople (1453) was the cause of great rejoicings in Egypt, 
but also by violent excesses on the part of the Mamelukes, who 
dictated the sultan's policy. On his death on the 26th of February 
1461 his son Ahmad was proclaimed sultan with the title Malik 
al-Mu'ayyad; he had the usual fate of sultans' sons, earned 
in his case by an attempt to bring the Mamelukes under disci- 
pline; he was compelled to abdicate on the 28th of June 1461, 
when the amir Khoshkadam, who had served as a general, was 
proclaimed sultan. Unlike the other Mameluke sovereigns, 
who were Turks or Circassians, this man had originally been a 
Greek slave. 

In his reign (1463) there began the struggle between the 
Egyptian and the Ottoman sultanates which finally led to the 
incorporation of Egypt in the Ottoman empire. The Early 
dispute began with a struggle over the succession in relations 
the principality of Karaman, where the two sultans £^?L 
favoured rival candidates, and the Ottoman sultan 
Mahommed II. supported the claim of his candidate with force 
of arms, obtaining as the price of his assistance several towns 
in which the suzerainty of the Egyptian sultan had been acknow- 
ledged. Open war did not, however, break out between the 
two states in Khoshkadam's time. This sultan is said to have 
taken money to permit innocent persons to be ill-treated or 
executed. He died on the 9th of October 1467, when the Atabeg 
Yelbai was selected by the Mamelukes to succeed him, and was 
proclaimed sultan with the title of Malik al-Zahir. This person, 
proving incompetent, was deposed by a revolution of the Mame- 
lukes on the 4th of December 1467, when the Atabeg Timurbogha 





was proclaimed with the title Malik al-Zahir, In a month's time, 
however, there was another palace revolution, and the new 
Atabeg Kail Bey or Kaietbai (January 3 ist, 1468) was proclaimed 
sultan, the dethroned Timurbogha being, however, permitted 
to go free whither he pleased. Much of Kait Bey's reign was 
spent in struggles with Uzun Hasan, prince of Diarbekr, and 
Shah Siwar, chief of the Dhu'l-Kadiri Turkomans. He also 
offended the Ottoman sultan Bayezid II. by entertaining his 
brother Jem, who was afterwards poisoned in Europe. Owing to 
this, and also to the fact that an Indian embassy to the Ottoman 
sultan was intercepted by the agents of Kait Bey, Bayezid II. 
declared war against Egypt, and seized Adana, Tarsus and other 
places within Egyptian territory; extraordinary efforts were 
made by Kait Bey, whose generals inflicted a severe defeat on 
the Ottoman invaders. In 1491, however, after the Egyptians 
had repeatedly defeated the Ottoman troops, Kait Bey made 
proposals of peace which were accepted, the keys of the towns 
which the Ottomans had seized being restored to the Egyptian 
sultan. Kait Bey endeavoured to assist his co-religionists in 
Spain who were threatened by King Ferdinand, by threatening 
the pope with reprisals on Syrian Christians, but without effect. 
As the consequence of a palace intrigue, which Kait Bey was too 
old to quell, on the 7th of August 1496, a day before his death, 
his son Mahommed was proclaimed sultan with the title Malik 
al-Nasir; this was in order to put the supreme power into the 
hands of the Atabeg Kansuh, since the new sultan was only 
fourteen years old. An attempt of the Atabeg to oust the new 
sultan, however, failed. After a reign of little more than two 
years, filled mainly with struggles between rival amirs, Malik 
al-Na§ir was murdered (October 31st, 1498), and his uncle and 
vizier Kansuh proclaimed sultan with the title Malik al-Zahir. 
His reign only lasted about twenty months; on the 30th of June 
1500 he was dethroned by Tiimanbey, who caused Jan Beldt, 
the Atabeg, to be proclaimed sultan. A few months later 
Tiimanbey, at the suggestion of Kasrawah, governor of Damascus, 
whom he had been sent to reduce to subjection, ousted Jan 
Belat, and was himself proclaimed sultan with the title Malik 
al-'Adil (January 25th, 1501). His reign lasted only one hundred 
days, when he was displaced by Kansuh al-Ghuri (April 20th, 
1501). His reign was remarkable for a naval conflict between 
the Egyptians and the Portuguese, whose fleet interfered with 
the pilgrim route from India to Mecca, and also with the trade 
between India and Egypt; Kansuh caused a fleet to be built 
which fought naval battles with the Portuguese with varying 

In 1515 there began the war with the Ottoman sultan Selim I. 
which led to the close of the Mameluke period, and the incorpora- 
tion of Egypt and its dependencies in the Ottoman 
Tbe empire (see Turkey: History). Kansuh was charged 

conquest by Selim with giving the envoys of the Safawid 
Isma'il passage through Syria on their way to Venice 
to form a confederacy against the Turks, and with harbouring 
various refugees. The actual declaration of war was not made 
by Selim till May 1515, when the Ottoman sultan had made all 
his preparations; and at the battle of Merj Dabik, on the 24th 
of August 1515, Kansuh was defeated by the Ottoman forces 
and fell fighting. Syria passed quickly into the possession of 
the Turks, whose advent was in many places welcome as meaning 
deliverance from the Mamelukes. In Cairo, when the news of 
the defeat and death of the Egyptian sultan arrived, the governor 
who had been left by Kansuh, Tiimanbey, was proclaimed sultan 
(October 17th, 1516). On the 20th of January 1517 Cairo was 
taken by the Ottomans, and Selim shortly after declared sultan 
of Egypt. Tiimanbey continued the struggle for some months, 
but was finally defeated, and after being captured and kept in 
prison seventeen days was executed on the 15th of April 15 17. 

(8) The Turkish Period. — The sultan Selim left with his viceroy 
Khair Bey a guard of 5000 janissaries, but otherwise made few 
changes in the administration of the country. The register by 
which a great portion of the land was a fief of the Mamelukes 
was left unchanged, and it is said that a proposal made by the 
sultan's vizier to appropriate these estates was punished with 

with the 

death. The Mameluke amirs were to be retained in office as 
heads of twelve sanjaks into, which Egypt was divided; and 
under the next sultan, Suleiman I., two chambers were created, 
called respectively the Greater and the Lesser Divan, in which 
both the army and the ecclesiastical authorities were represented, 
to aid the pasha by their deliberations. Six regiments altogether 
were constituted by the conqueror Selim for the protection of 
Egypt; to these Suleiman added a seventh, of Circassians. 
As will be seen from the tables, it was the practice of the Porte 
to change the governor of Egypt at very short intervals-rafter 
a year or even some months. The third governor, Ahmad 
Pasha, hearing that orders for this execution had come from 
Constantinople, endeavoured to make himself an independent 
ruler and had coins struck in his own name. His schemes were 
frustrated by two of the amirs whom he had imprisoned and 
who, escaping from their confinement, attacked him in his bath 
and killed him. In 1527 the first survey of Egypt under the 
Ottomans was made, in consequence of the official copy of the 
former registers having perished by fire; yet this new survey did 
not come into use until 1605. Egyptian lands were divided in it 
into four classes — the sultan's domain, fiefs, land for the main- 
tenance of the army, and lands settled on religious foundations. 
It would seem that the constant changes in the government 
caused the army to get out of control at an early period of the 
Ottoman occupation, and at the beginning of the nth 
Islamic century mutinies became common; in 1013 Troubles 
(1604) the governor Ibrahim Pasha was murdered by 
the soldiers, and his head set on the Bab Zuwela. The 
reason for these mutinies was the attempt made by successive 
pashas to put a stop to the extortion called Tulbah, a forced 
payment exacted by the troops from the inhabitants of the 
country by the fiction of debts requiring to be discharged, 
which led to grievous ill-usage. In 1609 something like civil 
war broke out between the army and the pasha, who had on his 
side some loyal regiments and the Bedouins. The soldiers went 
so far as to choose a sultan, and to divide provisionally the regions 
of Cairo between them. They were defeated by the governor 
Mahommed Pasha, who on the 5th of February 1610 entered 
Cairo in triumph, executed the ringleaders, and banished many 
others to Yemen. The contemporary historian speaks of this 
event as a second conquest of Egypt for the Ottomans. A great 
financial reform was now effected by Mahommed Pasha, who 
readjusted the burdens imposed on the different communities 
of Egypt in accordance with their means. With the troubles 
that beset the metropolis of the Ottoman empire, the governors 
appointed thence came to be treated by the Egyptians with 
continually decreasing respect. In July 1623 there came an order 
from the Porte dismissing Mustafa Pasha and appointing 'All 
Pasha governor in his place. The officers met and demanded 
from the newly-appointed governor's deputy the customary 
gratuity; when this was refused they sent letters to the Porte 
declaring that they wished to have Mustafa Pasha and not "All 
Pasha as governor. Meanwhile 'All Pasha had arrived at Alex- 
andria, and was met by a deputation from Cairo telling him that 
he was not wanted. He returned a mild answer; and, when a 
rejoinder came in the same style as the first message, he had the 
leader of the deputation arrested and imprisoned. Hereupon the 
garrison of Alexandria attacked the castle and rescued the 
prisoner; whereupon 'All Pasha was compelled to embark. 
Shortly after a rescript arrived from Constantinople confirming 
Mustafa Pasha in the governorship. Similarly in 163 1 the army 
took upon themselves to depose the governor Must Pasha, in 
indignation at his execution of Kitas Bey, an officer who was 
to have commanded an Egyptian force required for service in 
Persia. The pasha was ordered either to hand over the execu- 
tioners to vengeance or to resign his place; as he refused to do 
the former he was compelled to do the latter, and presently a 
rescript came from Constantinople, approving the conduct of 
the army and appointing one Khalil Pasha as Musa's successor. 
Not only was the governor unsupported by the sultan against 
the troops, but each new governor regularly inflicted a fine upon 
his outgoing predecessor, under the name of money due to the 




treasury; and the outgoing governor would not be allowed to 
leave Egypt till he had paid it. Besides the extortions to which 
this practice gave occasion the country suffered greatly in these 
centuries from famine and pestilence. The latter in the spring 
of 1619 is said to have carried off 635,000 persons, and in 1643 
completely desolated 230 villages. 

By the 18th century the importance of the pasha was quite 
superseded by that of the beys, and two offices, those of Sheik 
al-Balad and Amir al-Hajj, which were held by these 
BeY8° ,tbe persons, represented the real headship of the com- 
munity. The process by which this state of affairs 
came about is somewhat obscure, owing to the want of good 
chronicles for the Turkish period of Egyptian history. In 
1707 the Sheik al-Balad, Qasim Iywaz, is found at the head of 
one of two Mameluke factions, the Qasimites and the Fiqarites, 
between whom the seeds of enmity were sown by the pasha 
of the time, with the result that a fight took place between the 
factions outside Cairo, lasting eighty days. At the end of that 
time Qasim Iywaz was killed and the office which he had held 
was given to his son Isma'il. Isma'Il held this office for sixteen 
years, while the pashas were constantly being changed, and 
succeeded in reconciling the two factions of Mamelukes. In 1 724 
this person was assassinated through the machinations of the 
pasha, and Shirkas Bey, of the opposing faction, elevated to the 
office of Sheik al-Balad in his place. He was soon driven from 
his post by one of his own faction called Dhu'l-Fiqar, and fled 
to Upper Egypt. After a short time he returned at the head of 
an army, and some engagements ensued, in the last of which 
Shirkas Bey met his end by drowning; Dhu'l-Fiqar was himself 
assassinated in 1730 shortly after this event. His place was 
filled by Othman Bey, who had served as his general in this war. 
In 1743 Othman Bey, who had governed with wisdom and 
moderation, was forced to fly from Egypt by the intrigues of 
two adventurers, Ibrahim and Ridwan Bey, who, when their 
scheme had succeeded, began a massacre of beys and others 
thought to be opposed to them; they then proceeded to govern 
Egypt jointly, holding the two offices mentioned above in 
alternate years. An attempt made by one of the pashas to rid 
himself of these two persons by a coup d'etat signally failed 
owing to the loyalty of their armed supporters, who released 
Ibrahim and Ridwan from prison and compelled the pasha 
to fly to Constantinople. An attempt made by a subsequent 
pasha in accordance with secret orders from Constantinople was 
so far successful that some of the beys were killed. Ibrahim and 
Ridwan escaped, and compelled the pasha to resign his governor- 
ship and return to Constantinople. Ibrahim shortly afterwards 
fell by the hand of an assassin who had aspired to occupy one of 
the vacant beyships himself, which was conferred instead on 
'All, who as 'All Bey was destined to play an important part in 
the history of Egypt. The murder of Ibrahim Bey took place 
in 1755, and his colleague Ridwan perished in the disputes that 
followed upon it. 

'All Bey, who had first distinguished himself by defending 
a caravan in Arabia against bandits, set himself the task of 
avenging the death of his former master Ibrahim, and 
ey ' spent eight years in purchasing Mamelukes and winning 
other adherents. He thereby excited the suspicions of the Sheik 
al-Balad Khalll Bey, who organized an attack upon him in the 
streets of Cairo, in consequence of which he fled to Upper Egypt. 
Here he met one Salih Bey, who had injuries to avenge on Khalll 
Bey, and the two organized a force with which they returned 
to Cairo and defeated Khalll, who was forced to fly to Tanta, 
where for a time he concealed himself; eventually, however, 
he was discovered, sent to Alexandria and finally strangled. 
The date of 'All Bey's victory was 11 64 a.h. (a.d. 1750), and 
after it he was made Sheik al-Balad. In that capacity he exe- 
cuted the murderer of his former master Ibrahim; but the 
resentment which this act aroused among the beys caused him 
to leave his post and fly to Syria, where he won the friendship 
of the governor of Acre, Zahir b. Omar, who obtained for him 
the goodwill of the Porte and reinstatement in his post as Sheik 
al-Balad. In 1766, after the death of his supporter the grand 

vizier Raghib Pasha, he was again compelled to fly from Egypt 
to Yemen, but in the following year he was told that his party at 
Cairo was strong enough to permit of his return. Resuming his 
office he raised eighteen of his friends to the rank of bey, among 
them Ibrahim and Murad, who were afterwards at the head of 
affairs, as well as Mahommed Abu'l-Dhahab, who was closely 
connected with the rest of 'All Bey's career. He appears to have 
done his utmost to bring Egyptian affairs into order, and by 
very severe measures repressed the brigandage of the Bedouins of 
Lower Egypt. He appears to have aspired to found an in- 
dependent monarchy, and to that end endeavoured to disband 
all forces except those which were exclusively under his own 
control. In 1769 a demand came to 'All Bey for a force of 12,060 
men to be employed by the Porte in the Russian war. It was 
suggested, however, at Constantinople that 'All would employ 
this force when he collected it for securing his own independence, 
and a messenger was sent by the Porte to the pasha with orders 
for his execution. 'All, being apprised by his agents at the 
metropolis of the despatch of this messenger, ordered him to be 
waylaid and killed; the despatches were seized and read by 'All 
before an assembly of the beys, who were assured that the order 
for execution applied to all alike, and he urged them to fight for 
their lives. His proposals were received with enthusiasm by 
the beys whom he had created. Egypt was declared independent 
and the pasha given forty-eight hours to quit the country. 
Zahir Pasha of Acre, to whom was sent official information of the 
step taken by 'All Bey, promised his aid and kept his word by 
compelling an army sent by the pasha of Damascus against 
Egypt to retreat. 

The Porte was not able at the time to take active measures 
for the suppression of 'All Bey, and the latter endeavoured to 
consolidate his dominions by sending expeditions against maraud- 
ing tribes, both in north and south Egypt, reforming the finance, 
and improving the administration of justice. His son-in-law, 
Abu'l-Dhahab, was sent to subject the Hawwarah, who had 
occupied the land between Assuan and Assiut, and a force of 
20,000 was sent to conquer Yemen. An officer named Isma'Il 
Bey was sent with 8000 to acquire the eastern shore of the Red 
Sea, and one named Hasan Bey to occupy Jidda. In six months 
the greater part of the Arabian peninsula was subject to 'All 
Bey, and he appointed as sherif of Mecca a cousin of his own, 
who bestowed on 'All by an official proclamation the titles 
Sultan of Egypt and Khakan of the Two Seas. He then, in 
virtue of this authorization, struck coins in his own name 
(1185 a.h.) and ordered his name to be mentioned in public 

His next move turned out fatally. Abu'l-Dhahab was sent 
with a force of 30,000 men in the same year (a.d. 1771) to conquer 
Syria; and agents were sent to negotiate alliances with Venice 
and Russia. Abu'l-Dhahab's progress through Palestine and 
Syria was triumphant. Reinforced by 'All Bey's ally Zahir, 
he easily took the chief cities, ending with Damascus; but at 
this point he appears to have entered into secret negotiations 
with the Porte, by which he undertook to restore Egypt to 
Ottoman suzerainty. He then proceeded to evacuate Syria, 
and marched with all the forces he could collect to Upper Egypt, 
occupying Assiut in April 1772. Having collected some addi- 
tional troops from the Bedouins, he marched on Cairo. Isma'Il 
Bey was sent by 'All Bey with a force of 3000 to check his 
advance; but at Basatln Isma'Il with his troops joined Abu'l- 
Dhahab. 'All Bey intended at first to defend himself so long as 
possible in the citadel at Cairo; but receiving information to 
the effect that his friend Zahir of Acre was still willing to give him 
refuge, he left Cairo for Syria (8th of April 1772), one day before 
the entrance of Abu'l-Dhahab. 

At Acre 'All's fortune seemed to be restored. A Russian 
vessel anchored outside the port, and, in accordance with the 
agreement which he had made with the Russian empire, he was 
supplied with stores and ammunition, and a force of 3000 
Albanians. He sent one of his officers, 'All Bey al-TantawI, to 
recover the Syrian towns evacuated by Abu'l-Dhahab, and now 
in the possession of the Porte. He himself took Jaffa and Gaza, 




the former of which he gave to his friend ?ahir of Acre. On the 
ist of February 1773 he received information from Cairo that 
Abu'l-Dhahab had made himself Sheik al-Balad, and in that 
capacity was practising unheard-of extortions, which were 
making Egypt with one voice call for the return of 'All Bey. 
He accordingly started for Egypt at the head of an army of 
8000 men, and on the 19th of April met the army of Abu'l- 
Dhahab at Salihia. 'All's forces were successful at the first 
engagement; but when the battle was renewed two days later 
he was deserted by some of his officers, and prevented by illness 
and wounds from himself taking the conduct of affairs. The 
result was a complete defeat for his army, after which he declined 
to leave his tent; he was captured after a brave resistance, and 
taken to Cairo, where he died seven days later. 

After 'All Bey's death Egypt became once more a dependency 
of the Porte, governed by Abu'l-Dhahab as Sheik al-Balad with 
the title pasha. He shortly afterwards received permission from 
the Porte to invade Syria, with the view of punishing 'All Bey's 
supporter Zahir, and left as his deputies in Cairo Isma'il Bey 
and Ibrahim Bey, who, by deserting 'All at the battle of Salihia, 
had brought about his downfall. After taking many cities in 
Palestine Abu'l-Dhahab died, the cause being unknown; and 
Murad Bey (another of the deserters at Salihia) brought his 
forces back to Egypt (26th of May 1775). 

Isma'il Bey now became Sheik al-Balad, but was soon involved 
in a dispute with Ibrahim and Murad, who after a time succeeded 
in driving Isma'il out of Egypt and establishing a joint rule (as 
Sheik al-Balad and Amir al-Hajj respectively) similar to that 
which had been tried previously. The two were soon involved 
in quarrels, which at one time threatened to break out into open 
war; but this catastrophe was averted, and the joint rule was 
maintained till 1786, when an expedition was sent by the Porte 
to restore Ottoman supremacy in Egypt. Murad Bey attempted 
to resist, but was easily defeated; and he with Ibrahim decided 
to fly to Upper Egypt and await the trend of events. On the 
ist of August 1782 the Turkish commander entered Cairo, and, 
after some violent measures had been taken for the restoration 
of order, Isma'il Bey was again made Sheik al-Balad and a new 
pasha installed as governor. In January 1791 a terrible plague 
began to rage in Cairo and elsewhere in Egypt, to which Isma'il 
Bey and most of his family fell victims. Owing to the need for 
competent rulers Ibrahim and Murad Bey were sent for from 
Upper Egypt and resumed their dual government. These two 
persons were still in office when Bonaparte entered Egypt. 

Moslem Authorities. — Arabic literature being cosmopolitan, and 
Arabic authors accustomed to travel from place to place to collect 
traditions and obtain oral instruction from contemporary authorities, 
or else to enjoy the patronage of Maecenates, the literary history of 
Egypt cannot be dissociated from that of the other Moslem countries 
in which Arabic was the chief literary vehicle. Hence the list of 
authors connected with Egypt, which occupies pages 161-275 of 
SuyQti's work, Husn al-muha&arah ji akhbiri Misr wal-Qdhirah 
(Cairo, 1321 A.H.), contains the names of persons like Mutanabbi, 
who stayed there for a short time in the service of some patron; Abu 
Tammam, who lived there before he acquired fame as a poet ; 'Umara 
of Yemen, who came there at a mature age to spend some years 
in the service of Fatimite viziers; each of whom figures in lists of 
authors belonging to some other country also. So long as the centre 
of the Islamic world was not in Egypt, the best talent was attracted 
elsewhere; but after the fall of Bagdad, Cairo became the chief seat 
of Islamic learning, and this rank, chiefly owing to the university of 
Azhar, it has ever since continued to maintain. The following 
composed special histories of Egypt: Ibn 'Abd al-Hakam, d. 257 
A.H.; 'Abd al-Rahim b. Yunus, d. 347; Mahommed b. Yusuf 
al-Kindi, d. somewhat later; Ibn Zulaq, d. 387; 'Izz al-Mulk 
Mahommed al-Musabbihi, d. 420; Mahommed b. Salamah al- 
Qoda'I, d. 454; Jamal al-din 'All al-Qifti, d. 568; Jamal al-dln 
al-rlalabi, d. 623; 'Abd al-La^if al-Baghdadi, d. 629 ; Mahommed b. 
'Abd al-Aziz al-Idrisi (history of Upper Egypt), d. 649; his son 
Ja'far (history of Cairo), d. 676; Ibn Sa'id, d. 685; Ibrahim b. 
Wasif Shah; Ibn al-Mutawwaj, d. 703; Mahommed b. Dani'al, 
d. 710; Ja'far b. Tha'lab Kamal al-din al-Adfu'i (history of Upper 
Egypt), d. 730; 'Abd al-Qarun al-Halabi, d. 735; Ibn Hablb, 
d. 779; Ibn Duqmaq, d. 790; Ibn Tughan, Shihab al-din al- 
Auhadi, d. 790; Ibn al-Mulaqqin, d. 806; Maqrlzi, Taqiyy al-din 
Ahmad, d. 840; Ibn Hajar al-'Asqalani, d. 852 ; al-Sakhawi, d. 902 ; 
Abu'l-Mahasin b. Taghribirdl, d. 874; Jalal al-din al-Suyuti, d. 911 ; 
Ibn Zunbul al-Rammal; Ibn Iyas, d. after 928; Mahommed b. 
Abi Surflr, d. after 1017; Zain al-din al Karami, d. 1033; 'Abd 

al-Rahman Jabarti, d. after 1236. Of many of the Mameluke sultans 
there are special chronicles preserved in various European and 
Oriental libraries. The works of many of the authors enumerated 
are topographical and biographical as well as purely historical. 
To these there should be added the Survey of Egypt, called al- 
tuhfah al-saniyyah of Ibn Ji'an, belonging to the time of Kait Bey; 
the treatise on the Egyptian constitution called Zubdat Kashf 
al-Mamalik, by Khalil al-Zahiri, of the same period; and the 
encyclopaedic work on the same subject called Subh al-Insha, by 
al-Qalqashandi, d. 821. 

Arabic poetry is in the main encomiastic and personal, and from 
the beginning of the Omayyad period sovereigns and governors 
paid poets to celebrate their achievements; of those of importance 
who are connected with Egypt we may mention Nusaib, encomiast 
of 'Abd al-Aziz b. Merwan, d. 180; the greater Nashi (Abu 1- Abbas 
'Abdallah), d. 293; Ibn Tabataba, d.345; Abu'l-Raqa'maq, 
encomiast of al-Mo'izz, d. 399; Sari' al-Dila ("All b. 'Abd al-Wahid), 
encomiast of the Fatimite al-Zahir, d. 412; Sanajat al-dauh 
(Mahommed b. al-Qasim), encomiast of Hakim; 'AH b. 'Abbad 
al-Iskandari, encomiast of the vizier al-Af(jal, executed by Hafiz; 
Ibn Qalaqis al-Iskandari, encomiast of the Ayyubites, d. 607 ; 
Muhaddhab b. Mameti, encomiast of the Ayyubites, d. 616; Ibn 
Sana' al-Mulk, encomiast of the Ayyubites, d. 658 ; Ibn al-Munajjim, 
d. 626; Ibn Matrflh, encomiast of the Ayyubites, d. 654; Baha' al- 
din Zuhair, encomiast of al-§alih, d. 656; Ibn 'Ammar, d. 675; 
al-Mi'mar, d. 749; Ibn Nubatah,' d. 768 ; Ibn Abi Hajalah, d. 776; 
Burhan al-din al-QIrati, d. 801; Ibn Mukanis, d. 864; Ibn Hijjah 
al-Hamawi, d. 837. Poets distinguished for special lines are al- 
Hakim b. Dani' al, d. 608, author of the Shadow-play; and al-Busiri 
(Mahommed b. Sa'id), d. 694, author of the ode in praise of the 
prophet called Burdah. The poets of Egypt are reckoned with 
those of Syria in the Yatlmah of Tha' alibi; a special work upon 
them was written by Ibn Fadl allah (d. 740) ; and a list of poets of 
the nth century is given by KhafajHn his Raihanat al-alibba. 

The needs of the Egyptian court produced a number of elegant 
letter-writers, of whom the most famous were 'Abd al-Rahim b. 
'All al-Baisani, ordinarily known as al-Qadl' al-Fadil, d. 596, secretary 
of state to Saladin and other Ayyubite sultans; Tmad al-din al- 
Ispahani, d. 597, also secretary of state and official chronicler; and 
Ibn 'Abd al-Zahir, d. 692, secretary of state to Bibars I. and succeed- 
ing sultans; he was followed by his son Fath al-din, to whom "the 
title " Secret writer " was first given. 

In the subject of law Egypt boasts that the Imam Shafi'I, founder 
of one of the schools, resided at Fostat from 195 till his death in 204; 
his system, though displaced for a time by that invented by the 
Fatimites, and since the Turkish conquest by the Hanifite system, 
has always been popular in Egypt: in Ayyubite times it was 
dominant, whereas in Mameluke times all four systems were officially 
recognized. The eminent jurists who flourished in Moslem Egypt 
form a very lengthy list. Among the Egyptian traditionalists the 
most eminent is Daraqutni, d. 385. 

Among Egyptian mystics the most famous as authors are the poet 
Ibn al-Farid, d. 632, and Abd al-Wahhab Sha rani, d. 973. Abu'l- 
Hasan al-Shadhili (d. 656) is celebrated as the founder of the Shadhili 
order; but there were many others of note. The dictionary of 
physicians, compiled in the 7th century, enumerates nearly sixty 
men of science who resided in Egypt ; the best-known among them 
are Sa'id b. Bitrlq, Moses Maimonides and Ibn Baitar. Of Egyptian 
miscellaneous writers two of the most celebrated are Ibn Daqiq 
al'-Id, d. 702, and Jalal al-din Suyut;!. 

European Authorities. — For the Moslem conquest, A. J. Butler, 
The Arab Conquest of Egypt (Oxford, 1902) ; for the period before the 
Fatimites, Wustenfeld, " Die Statthalter von Agypten," in Abhand- 
lungen der koniglichen Gesellschaft der Wissenschaften zu Gottingen, 
vols. xx. and xxi. ; for the Fatimite period, Wustenfeld, " Geschichte 
der Fatimiden-Chalifen," ibid. vols. xxvi. and xxvii. ; for the 
Ayyubite period, Ibn Khallikan's Biographical Dictionary, translated 
by M'G. de Slane (London, 1842-1871) ; for the Mameluke period, 
Weil, Geschichte der Chalifen, vols. iv. and v. (also called Geschichte 
des Abbasidenchalifats in Agypten), (Stuttgart, 1860-1862); Sir 
W. Muir, The Mameluke or Slave Dynasty of Egypt (London, 1896); 
for the Turkish period, G. Zaidan, History of Modern Egypt (Arabic), 
vol. ii. (Cairo, 1889). See also Maqrizi, Description topographique 
et historique de I'Ugypte, translated by Bouriant (Pans, 1895, 
&c.) ; C. H. Becker, Beitrage zur Geschichte Agyptens (Strassburg, 
1902). ' (D. S. M.*) 

(9) From the French Occupation to the Rise of Mehemet Ali. — ■ 
The ostensible object of the French expedition to Egypt was to 
reinstate the authority of the Sublime Porte, and suppress the 
Mamelukes; and in the proclamation printed with the Arabic 
types brought from the Propaganda press, and issued shortly 
after the taking of Alexandria, Bonaparte declared that he 
reverenced the prophet Mahomet and the Koran far more than 
the Mamelukes reverenced either, and argued that all men were 
equal except so far as they were distinguished by their intellectual 
and moral excellences, of neither of which the Mamelukes had 




any great share. In future all posts in Egypt were to be open 
to all classes of the inhabitants; the conduct of affairs was to 
be committed to the men of talent, virtue, and learning; and 
in proof of the statement that the French were sincere Moslems 
the overthrow of the papal authority in Rome was alleged. 
That there might be no doubt of the friendly feeling of the 
French to the Porte, villages and towns which capitulated to 
the invaders were required to hoist the flags of both the Porte 
and the French republic, and in the thanksgiving prescribed 
to the Egyptians for their deliverance from the Mamelukes, 
prayer was to be offered for both the sultan and the French army. 
It does not appear that the proclamation convinced many of the 
Egyptians of the truth of these professions. After the battle 
of Ambabah, at which the forces of both Murad Bey and Ibrahim 
Bey were dispersed, the populace readily plundered the houses of 
the beys, and a deputation was sent from al-Azhar to Bonaparte 
to ascertain his intentions; these proved to be a repetition of 
the terms of his proclamation, and, though the combination of 
loyalty to the French with loyalty to the sultan was unintelligible, 
a good understanding was at first established between the 
invaders and the Egyptians. A municipal council was estab- 
lished in Cairo, consisting of persons taken from the ranks of the 
sheiks, the Mamelukes and the French; and presently delegates 
from Alexandria and other important towns were added. This 
council did little more than register the decrees of the French 
commander, who continued to exercise dictatorial power. The 

destruction of the -French fleet at the battle of the 
th Nile Nile, and the failure of the French forces sent to Upper 

Egypt (where they reached the first cataract) to obtain 
possession of the person of Murad Bey, shook the faith of the 
Egyptians in their invincibility; and in consequence of a series 
of unwelcome innovations the relations between conquerors and 
conquered grew daily more strained, till at last, on the occasion 
of the introduction of a house tax, an insurrection broke out in 
Cairo on the 22nd of October 1798, of which the headquarters 
were in the Moslem university of Azhar. On this occasion the 
French general Dupuy, lieutenant-governor of Cairo, was killed. 
The prompt measures of Bonaparte, aided by the arrival from 
Alexandria of General J. B. Kleber, quickly suppressed this 
rising; but the stabling of the French cavalry in the mosque 
of Azhar gave great and permanent offence. In consequence of 
this affair, the deliberative council was suppressed, but on the 
25th of December a fresh proclamation was issued, reconstituting 
the two divans which had been created by the Turks ; the special 
divan was to consist of 14 persons chosen by lot out of 60 govern- 
ment nominees, and was to meet daily. The general divan was 
to consist of functionaries, and to meet on emergencies. 

In consequence of despatches which reached Bonaparte on 
the 3rd of January 1799, announcing the intention of the Porte 
to invade the country with the object of recovering it by force, 
Bonaparte resolved on his Syrian expedition, and appointed 
governors for Cairo, Alexandria, and Upper Egypt, to govern 
during his absence. From that ill-fated expedition he returned 
at the beginning of June. Advantage had been taken of this 
opportunity by Murad Bey and Ibrahim Bey to collect their 
forces and attempt a joint attack on Cairo, but this Bonaparte 
arrived in time to defeat, and in the last week of July he inflicted 
a crushing defeat on the Turkish army that had landed at 
Aboukir, aided by the British fleet commanded by Sir Sidney 
Smith. Shortly after his victory Bonaparte left Egypt, having 
appointed Kleber to govern in his absence, which he informed 
the sheiks of Cairo was not to last more than three months. 
Kleber himself regarded the condition of the French invaders 
as extremely perilous, and wrote to inform the French republic 
of the facts. A double expedition shortly after Bonaparte's 
departure was sent by the Porte for the recovery of Egypt, one 
force being despatched by sea to Damietta, while another under 
Yusuf Pasha took the land route from Damascus by al-Arish. 
Over the first some success was won, in consequence of which 
the Turks agreed to a convention (signed January 24, 1800), 
by virtue of which the French were to quit Egypt. The Turkish 
iroops advanced to Bilbeis, where they were received by the 

sheiks from Cairo, and the Mamelukes also returned to that 
city from their hiding-places. Before the preparations for the 
departure of the French were completed, orders came to Sir 
Sidney Smith from the British government, forbidding the 
carrying out of the convention unless the French army were 
treated as prisoners of war; and when these were communicated 
to Kleber he cancelled the orders previously given to the troops, 
and proceeded to put the country in a state of defence. His 
departure with most of the army to attack the Turks at Mataria 
led to riots in Cairo, in the course of which many Christians were 
slaughtered; but the national party were unable to get possession 
of the citadel, and Kleber, having defeated the Turks, was soon 
able to return to the capital. On the 14th of April he bombarded 
Bulak, and proceeded to bombard Cairo itself, which was taken 
the following night. Order was soon restored, and a fine of 
twelve million francs imposed on the rioters. Murad Bey 
sought an interview with Kleber and succeeded in obtaining 
from him the government of Upper Egypt. He died shortly 
afterwards and was succeeded by Osman Bey al-BardlsI. 

On the 14th of June Kleber was assassinated by a fanatic 
named Suleiman of Aleppo, said to have been incited to the deed 
by a Janissary refugee at Jerusalem, who had brought letters 
to the sheiks of the Azhar, who, however, refused to give him 
any encouragement. Three of these, nevertheless, were executed 
by the French as accessories before the fact, and the assassin 
himself was impaled, after torture, in spite of a promise of pardon 
having been made to him on condition of his naming his associates. 
The command of the army then devolved on General J. F. 
(Baron de) Menou (1750-1810), a man who had professed Islam, 
and who endeavoured to conciliate the Moslem population by 
various measures, such as excluding all Christians (with the 
exception of one Frenchman) from the divan, replacing the Copts 
who were in government service by Moslems, and subjecting 
French residents to taxes. Whatever popularity might have 
been gained by these measures was counteracted by his declara- 
tion of a French protectorate over Egypt, which was to count 
as a French colony. 

In the first weeks of March 1801 the English, under Sir R. 
Abercromby, effected a landing at Aboukir, and proceeded to 
invest Alexandria, where on the 2 1st they were attacked 
by Menou ; the French were repulsed, but the English French 
commander was mortally wounded in the action. On tiom 
the 25th fresh reinforcements arrived under Husain, 
the Kapudan Pasha, or high admiral; and a combined English 
and Turkish force was sent to take Rosetta. On the 30th of 
May, General A. D. Belliard, who had been left in charge at 
Cairo, was assailed on two sides by the British forces under 
General John Hely Hutchinson (afterwards 2nd earl of Donough- 
more), and the Turkish under Yusuf Pasha; after negotiations 
Belliard agreed to evacuate Cairo and to sail with his 13,734 
troops to France. On the 30th of August, Menou at Alexandria 
was compelled to accept similar conditions, and his force of 
10,000 left for Europe in September. This was the termination 
of the French occupation of Egypt, of which the chief permanent 
monument was the Description de l'£gypte, compiled by the 
French savants who accompanied the expedition. Further 
than this, " it brought to the attention of a few men in Egypt 
a keen sense of the great advantage of an orderly government, 
and a warm appreciation of the advance that science and learning 
had made in Europe " (Hajji Browne, Bonaparte in Egypt and 
the Egyptians of to-day, 1907, p. 268). 

Soon after the evacuation of Egypt by the French, the country 
became the scene of more severe troubles, in consequence of the 
attempts of the Turks to destroy the power of the Mamelukes. 
In defiance of promises to the British government, orders were 
transmitted from Constantinople to Husain Pasha, the Turkish 
high admiral, to ensnare and put to death the principal beys. 
Invited to an entertainment, they were, according to the 
Egyptian contemporary historian al-Jabarti, attacked on board 
the flag-ship; Sir Robert Wilson and M. F. Mengin, however, 
state that they were fired on, in open boats, in the Bay of Aboukir. 
They offered an heroic resistance, but were overpowered, and 




some killed, some made prisoners; among the last was Osman 
Bey al-Bardisi, who was severely wounded. General Hutchinson, 
British informed of this treachery, immediately assumed 
Turks and threatening measures against the Turks, and in 
name- consequence the killed, wounded and prisoners were 
lukes. given up to him. At the same time Ytisuf Pasha 

arrested all the beys in Cairo, but was shortly compelled by the 
British to release them. Such was the beginning of the disastrous 
struggle between the Mamelukes and the Turks. 

Mahommed Khosrev was the first Turkish governor of Egypt 
after the expulsion of the French. The form of government, 
however, was not the same as that before the French invasion, 
for the Mamelukes were not reinstated. The pasha, and through 
him the sultan, endeavoured on several occasions either to 
ensnare them or to beguile them into submission; but 
these efforts failing, Mahommed Khosrev took the field, and a 
Turkish detachment 7000 strong was despatched against them 
to Damanhur, whither they had descended from Upper Egypt, 
and was defeated by a small force under al-Alfl; or, as Mengin 
says, by 800 men commanded by al-Bardlsi, when al-Alfl had 
left the field. Their ammunition and guns fell into the hands 
of the Mamelukes. 

In March 1803 the British evacuated Alexandria, and Ma- 
hommed Bey al-Alfl accompanied them to England to consult 
respecting the means to be adopted for restoring the former 
power of the Mamelukes, who meanwhile took Minia and inter- 
rupted communication between Upper and Lower Egypt. About 
six weeks after, the Arnaut (or Albanian) soldiers in the service 
of Khosrev tumultuously demanded their pay, and surrounded 
the house of the defterdar (or finance minister), who in vain 
appealed to the pasha to satisfy their claims. The latter opened 
fire from the artillery of his palace on the insurgent soldiery in 
the house of the defterdar, across the Ezbekia. The citizens of 
Cairo, accustomed to such occurrences, immediately closed their 
shops, and every man who possessed any weapon armed himself. 
The tumult continued all the day, and the next morning a body 
of troops sent out by the pasha failed to quell it. Tahir, the 
commander of the Albanians, then repaired to the citadel, gained 
admittance through an embrasure, and, having obtained posses- 
sion of it, began to cannonade the pasha over the roofs of the 
intervening houses, and then descended with guns to the Ezbekia 
and laid close siege to the palace. On the following day 
Mahommed Khosrev made good his escape, with his women 
and servants and his regular troops, and fled to Damietta by 
the river. This revolt marks the beginning in Egypt of the 
breach between the Albanians and Turks, which ultimately led 
to the expulsion of the latter, and of the rise to power of the 
Albanian Mehemet Ah (q.v.) , who was destined to rule the country 
for nearly forty years and be the cause of serious European 
complications. , 

Tahir Pasha assumed the government, but in twenty-three 
days he met with his death from exactly the same cause as that 
First °^ l ^ e overthrow of his predecessor. He refused the 

appear- pay of certain of the Turkish troops, and was immedi- 
aticeof ately assassinated. A desperate conflict ensued between 
Mehemet ^e Albanians and Turks; and the palace was set on 
fire and plundered. The masters of Egypt were now 
split into these two factions, animated with the fiercest animosity 
against each other. Mehemet Ali, then in command of an 
Albanian regiment, became the head of the former, but his party 
was the weaker, and he therefore entered into an alliance with 
the Mameluke leaders Ibrahim Bey and 'Osman Bey al-Bardisi. 
A certain Ahmed Pasha, who was about to proceed to a province 
in Arabia, of which he had been appointed governor, was raised 
to the important post of pasha of Egypt, through the influence 
of the Turks and the favour of the sheiks; but Mehemet Ali, 
who with his Albanians held the citadel, refused to assent to 
their choice; the Mamelukes moved over from El-Giza, whither 
they had been invited by Tahir Pasha, and Ahmed Pasha betook 
himself to the mosque of al-Zahir, which the French had con- 
verted into a fortress. He was compelled to surrender by the 
Albanians; the two chiefs of the Turks who killed Tahir Pasha 

were taken with him and put to death, and he himself was de- 
tained a prisoner. In consequence of the alliance between 
Mehemet Ali and a]-Bardisi, the Albanians gave the citadel over 
to the Mamelukes; and soon after, these allies marched against 
Khosrev Pasha, who having been joined by a considerable body 
of Turks, and being in possession of Damietta, was enabled to 
offer an obstinate resistance. After much loss on both sides, 
he was taken prisoner and brought to Cairo; but he was treated 
with respect. The victorious soldiery sacked the town of 
Damietta, and were guilty of the barbarities usual with them on 
such occasions. 

A few days later, Ali Pasha Jazairli landed at Alexandria 
with an imperial firman constituting him pasha of Egypt, and 
threatened the beys, who now were virtual masters of Upper 
Egypt, as well as of the capital and nearly the whole of Lower 
Egypt. Mehemet Ali and al-Bardisi therefore descended to 
Rosetta, which had fallen into the hands of a brother of Ali 
Pasha, and having captured the town and its commander, al- 
Bardisi purposed to proceed against Alexandria; but the troops 
demanded arrears of pay which it was not in his power to give, 
and the pasha had cut the dyke between the lakes of Aboukir 
and Mareotis, thus rendering the approach to Alexandria more 
difficult. Al-Bardlsi and Mehemet Ali therefore returned to 
Cairo. The troubles of Egypt were now increased by an in- 
sufficient inundation, and great scarcity prevailerl, aggravated 
by the taxation to which the beys were compelled to resort in 
order to pay the troops; while murder and rapine prevailed 
in the capital, the riotous soldiery being under little or no 
control. Meanwhile, Ali Pasha, who had been behaving with 
violence towards the Franks in Alexandria, received a hatt-i- 
sherif from the sultan, which he sent by his secretary to Cairo. 
It announced that the beys should live peaceably in Egypt, with 
an annual pension each of fifteen purses (a "purse "=500 
piastres) and other privileges, but that the government should 
be in the hands of the pasha. To this the beys assented, 
but with considerable misgivings; for they had intercepted 
letters from Ali to the Albanians, endeavouring to alienate them 
from their side to his own. Deceptive answers were returned 
to these, and Ali was induced by them to advance 
towards Cairo at the head of 3000 men. The forces \ uk e es *™J' 
of the beys, with the Albanians, encamped near him Ail Pasha. 
at Shalakan, and he fell back on a place called Zufeyta. 
They next seized his boats conveying soldiers, servants, and his 
ammunition and baggage; and, following him, they demanded 
wherefore he brought with him so numerous a body of men, in 
opposition to usage and to their previous warning. Finding 
they would not allow his troops to advance, forbidden himself 
to retreat with them to Alexandria, and being surrounded by 
the enemy, he would have hazarded a battle, but his men refused 
to fight. He therefore went to the camp of the beys, and his 
army was compelled to retire to Syria. In the hands of the beys 
Ali Pasha again attempted treachery. A horseman was seen to 
leave his tent one night at full gallop; he was the bearer of a 
letter to Osman Bey Hasan, the governor of Kine. This offered 
a fair pretext to the Mamelukes to rid themselves of a man 
proved to be a perfidious tyrant. He was sent under a guard 
of forty-five men towards the Syrian frontier; and about a 
week after, news was received that in a skirmish with some of 
his own soldiers he had fallen mortally wounded. 

The death of Ali Pasha produced only temporary tranquillity; 
in a few days (February 12, 1804) the return of Mahommed Bey 
al-Alfl (called the Great) from England was the signal for fresh 
disturbances, which, by splitting the Mamelukes into two parties, 
accelerated their final overthrow. An ancient jealousy existed 
between al-Alfl and the other most powerful bey, al-Bardisi. 
The latter was now supreme among the Mamelukes, and this 
fact considerably heightened their old enmity. While the guns 
of the citadel, those at Old Cairo, and even those of the palace 
of al-Bardisi, were thrice fired in honour of al-Alfi, preparations 
were immediately begun to oppose him. His partisans were 
collected opposite Cairo, and al-Alfi the Less held Giza; but 
treachery was among them; Husain Bey (a relative of al-Alfi) 




was assassinated by emissaries of al-Bardlsi, and Mehemet Ali, 
with his Albanians, gained possession of Giza, which was, as 
usual, given over to the troops to pillage. In the meanwhile 
al-Alfi the Great embarked at Rosetta, and not apprehending 
opposition, was on his way to Cairo, when a little south of the 
town of Manuf he encountered a party of Albanians, and with 
difficulty made his escape. He gained the eastern branch of the 
Nile, but the river had become dangerous, and he fled to the 
desert. There he had several hairbreadth escapes, and at last 
secreted himself among a tribe of Arabs at Ras al-Wadi. A 
change in the fortune of al-Bardlsi, however, favoured his plans 
for the future. That chief, in order to satisfy the demands of 
the Albanians for their pay, gave orders to levy heavy contri- 
butions from the citizens of Cairo; and this new oppression 
roused them to rebellion. The Albanians, alarmed for their 
safety, assured the populace that they would not allow the order 
to be executed; and Mehemet Ali himself caused a proclamation 
to be made to that effect. Thus the Albanians became the 
favourites of the people, and took advantage of their oppor- 
tunity. Three days later (March 1 2th, 1804) they beset the house 
of the aged Ibrahim Bey, and that of al-Bardisi, both of whom 
effected their escape with difficulty. The Mamelukes in the 
citadel directed a fire of shot and shell on the houses of the 
Albanians which were situated in the Ezbekla; but, on hearing 
of the flight of their chiefs, they evacuated the place; and 
Mehemet Ali, on gaining possession of it, once more proclaimed 
Mahommed Khosrev pasha of Egypt. For one day and a half 
he enjoyed the title; the friends of the late Tahir Pa-sha then 
accomplished his second degradation, 1 and Cairo was again the 
scene of terrible enormities, the Albanians revelling in the houses 
of the Mameluke chiefs, whose hareems met with no mercy at 
their hands. These events were the signal for the reappearance 
of al-Alfl. 

The Albanians now invited Ahmed Pasha Khorshld to assume 
the reins of government, and he without delay proceeded from 
Alexandria to Cairo. The forces of the partisans of al-BardisI 
were rava dng the country a few miles south of the capital and 
intercepting the supplies of corn by the river; a little later they 
passed to the north of Cairo and successively took Bilbeis and 
Kalyub, plundering the villages, destroying the crops, and 
slaughtering the herds of the inhabitants. Cairo was itself in 
a state of tumult, suffering severely from a scarcity of grain, and 
the heavy exactions of the pasha to meet the demands of his 
turbulent troops, at that time augmented by a Turkish detach- 
ment. The shops were closed, and the unfortunate people 
assembled in great crowds, crying " Ya Latlf ! Ya Latif! " ("O 
Gracious [God] ! ") Al-Alf I and Osman Bey Hasan had professed 
allegiance to the pasha; but they soon after declared against 
him, and they were now approaching from the south; and 
having repulsed Mehemet Ali, they took the two fortresses of 
Tura. These Mehemet Ali speedily retook by night with 4000 
infantry and cavalry; but the enterprise was only partially 
successful. On the following day the other Mamelukes north 
of the metropolis actually penetrated into the suburbs; but a 
few days later were defeated in a battle fought at Shubra, with 
heavy loss on both sides. This reverse in a measure united the 
two great Mameluke parties, though their chiefs remained at 
enmity. Al-Bardisi passed to the south of Cairo, and the Mame- 
lukes gradually retreated towards Upper Egypt. Thither the 
pasha despatched three suacessive expeditions (one of which was 
commanded by Mehemet Ali), and many battles were fought, 
but without decisive result. 

At this period another calamity befell Egypt; about 3000 
Delis (Kurdish troops) arrived in Cairo from Syria. These troops 
had been sent for by Khorshld in order to strengthen himself 
against the Albanians; and the events of this portion of the 
history afford sad proof of their ferocity and brutal enormities, 

1 Khosrev Pasha afterwards filled several of the highest offices at 
Constantinople. He died on the 1st of February 1855. He was a 
bigot of the old school, strongly opposed to the influences of Western 
civilization, and consequently to the assistance of France and Great 
Britain in the Crimean Wa*. 

in which they far exceeded the ordinary Turkish soldiers and 
even the Albanians. Their arrival immediately recalled Mehemet 
Ali and his party from the war, and instead of aiding Khorshld 
was the proximate cause of his overthrow. 

Cairo was ripe for revolt; the pasha was hated for his tyranny 
and extortion, and execrated for the deeds of his troops, especi- 
ally those of the Delis: the sheiks enjoined the people to close 
their shops, and the soldiers clamoured for pay. At this juncture 
a firman arrived from Constantinople conferring on Mehemet 
Ali the pashalic of Jedda; but the occurrences of a few days 
raised him to that of Egypt. 

On the 1 2th of Safar 1220 (May 12th, 1805) the sheiks, with 
an immense concourse of the inhabitants, assembled in the house 
of the kadi; and the ulema, amid the prayers and 
cries of the people, wrote a full statement of the heavy bJtweea 
wrongs which they had endured under the administra- Khorshld 
tion of the pasha. The ulema, in answer, were desired **"' 
to go to the citadel; but they were apprised of Mehemet 
treachery; and on the following day, having held 
another council. at the house of the kadi, they proceeded to 
Mehemet Ali and informed him that the people would no longer 
submit to Khorshld. " Then whom will ye have? " said he. 
" We will have thee," they replied, " to govern us according to 
the laws; for we see in thy countenance that thou art possessed 
of justice and goodness." Mehemet Ali seemed to hesitate, and 
then complied, and was at once invested. On this, a bloody 
struggle began between the two pashas. Khorshld, being 
informed of the insurrection, immediately prepared to stand a 
siege in the citadel. Two chiefs of the Albanians joined his 
party, but many of his soldiers deserted. Mehemet Ali's great 
strength lay in the devotion of the citizens of Cairo, who looked 
on him as a deliverer from their afflictions; and great numbers 
armed themselves, advising constantly with Mehemet Ali, 
having the sayyid Omar and the sheiks at their head, and 
guarding the town at night. On the 19th of the same month 
Mehemet Ali began to besiege Khorshld. After the siege had 
continued many days, Khorshld gave orders to cannonade and 
bombard the town; and for six days his commands were executed 
with little interruption, the citadel itself also lying between two 
fires. Mehemet Ali's position at this time was very critical: 
his troops became mutinous for their pay; the silahdar, who 
had commanded one of the expeditions against the Mamelukes, 
advanced to the relief of Khorshld; and the latter ordered the 
Delis to march to his assistance. The firing ceased on the 
Friday, but began again on the eve of Saturday and lasted until 
the next Friday. On the day following (May 28th) news came 
of the arrival at Alexandria of a messenger from Constantinople. 
The ensuing night in Cairo presented a curious spectacle; many 
of the inhabitants, believing that this envoy would put an end 
to their miseries, fired off their weapons as they paraded the 
streets with bands of music. The silahdar, imagining the noise 
to be a fray, marched in haste towards the citadel, while its 
garrison sallied forth and began throwing up entrenchments 
in the quarter of Arab al-Yesar, but were repulsed by the armed 
inhabitants and the soldiers stationed there; and during all this 
time the cannonade and bombardment from the citadel, and on it 
from the batteries on the hill, continued unabated. 

The envoy brought a firman confirming Mehemet Ali and 
ordering Khorshld to go to Alexandria, there to await further 
orders; but this he refused to do, on the ground that 
he had been appointed by a hatt-i-sherlf. The firing jjj emet 
ceased on the following day, but the troubles of the granted 
people were rather increased than assuaged; murders the 
and robberies were daily committed by the soldiery, pasha " c - 
the shops were all shut and some of the streets barricaded. While 
these scenes were being enacted, al-Alfl was besieging Damanhur, 
and the other beys were returning towards Cairo, Khorshld 
having called them to his assistance: but Mehemet Ali forced 
them to recreat. 

Soon after this, a squadron under the command of the Turkish 
high admiral arrived at Aboukir Bay, with despatches confirming 
tfee &rman brought by .the former envoy, and authorizing 




Mehemet Ali to continue to discharge the functions of governor. 
Khorshld at first refused to yield; but at length, on condition 
that his troops should be paid, he evacuated the citadel and 
embarked for Rosetta. 

Mehemet Ali now possessed the title of Governor of Egypt, 
but beyond the walls of Cairo his authority was everywhere 
disputed by the beys, who were joined by the army of the 
silahdar of Khorshld; and many Albanians deserted from his 
ranks. To replenish his empty coffers he was also compelled to 
levy exactions, principally from the Copts. An attempt was 
made to ensnare certain of the beys, who were encamped north 
of Cairo. On the 17th of August 1805 the dam of the canal of 
Cairo was to be cut, and some chiefs of Mehemet Ali's party 
wrote, informing them that he would go forth early on that 
morning with most of his troops to witness the ceremony, inviting 
them to enter and seize the city, and, to deceive them, stipulating 
for a certain sum of money as a reward. The dam, however, 
was cut early in the preceding night, without any ceremony. 
On the following morning, these beys, with their Mamelukes, 
a very numerous body, broke open the gate of the suburb 
al-Husainia, and gained admittance into the city from the north, 
through the gate called Bab el-Futtih. They marched along the 
principal street for some distance, with kettle-drums behind each 
company, and were received with apparent joy by the citizens. 
At the mosque called the Ashrafia they separated, one party 
proceeding to the Azhar and the houses of certain sheiks, and 
the other continuing along the main street, and through the 
gate called Bab Zuwela, where they turned up towards the 
citadel. Here they were fired on by some soldiers from the 
houses; and with this signal a terrible massacre began. Falling 
back towards their companions, they found the bye-streets 
closed; and in that part of the main thoroughfare called Bain al- 
Kasrain they were suddenly placed between two fires. Thus 
shut up in a narrow street, some sought refuge in the collegiate 
mosque Barkukia, while the remainder fought their way through 
their enemies and escaped over the city-wall with the loss of 
their horses. Two Mamelukes had in the meantime succeeded, 
by great exertions, in giving the alarm to their comrades in the 
quarter of the Azhar, who escaped by the eastern gate called 
Bab al-Ghoraib. A horrible fate awaited those who had shut 
themselves up in the Barkukia. Having begged for quarter 

and surrendered, they were immediately stripped nearly 
massacre naked, and about fifty were slaughtered on the spot; 
of the and about the same number were dragged away, with 
Mame- every brutal aggravation of their pitiful condition, to 

Mehemet Ali. Among them were four beys, one of 
whom, driven to madness by Mehemet Ali's mockery, asked for 
a drink of water; his hands were untied that he might take the 
bottle, but he snatched a dagger from one of the soldiers, rushed 
at the pasha, and fell covered with wounds. The wretched 
captives were then chained and left in the court of the pasha's 
house; and on the following morning the heads of their com- 
rades who had perished the day before were skinned and stuffed 
with straw before their eyes. One bey and two others paid their 
ransom and were released; the rest, without exception, were 
tortured and put to death in the course of the ensuing night. 
Eighty-three heads (many of them those of Frenchmen and 
Albanians) were stuffed and sent to Constantinople, with a 
boast that the Mameluke chiefs were utterly destroyed. Thus 
ended Mehemet Ali's first massacre of his too confiding enemies. 
The beys, after this, appear to have despaired of regaining 
their ascendancy; most of them retreated to Upper Egypt, 
and an attempt at compromise failed. Al-Alfi offered his sub- 
mission on the condition of the cession of the Fayum and other 
provinces; but this was refused, and that chief gained two 
successive victories over the pasha's troops, many of whom 
deserted to him. 

At length, in consequence of the remonstrances of the English, 
and a promise made by al-Alfl of 1 500 purses, the Porte consented 
to reinstate the twenty-four beys and to place al-Alf! at their 
head; but this measure met with the opposition of Mehemet Ali 
and the determined resistance of the majority of the Mamelukes, 

who, rather than have al-Alfl at their head, preferred their 
present condition; for the enmity of al-Bardisi had not subsided, 
and he commanded the voice of most of the other beys. In 
pursuance of the above plan, a squadron under Salih Pasha, 
shortly before appointed high admiral, arrived at Alexandria 
on the 1st of July 1806 with 3000 regular troops and a successor 
to Mehemet Ali, who was to receive the pashalik of Salonica. 
This wily chief professed his willingness to obey the commands 
of the Porte, but stated that his troops, to whom he owed a 
vast sum of money, opposed his departure. He induced the 
ulema to sign a letter, praying the sultan to revoke the command 
for reinstating the beys, persuaded the chiefs of the Albanian 
troops to swear allegiance to him, and sent 2000 purses con- 
tributed by them to Constantinople. Al-Alfi was at that time 
besieging Damanhur, and he gained a signal victory over the 
pasha's troops; but the dissensions of the beys destroyed their 
last chance of a return to power. Al-Alfi and his partisans were 
unable to pay the sum promised to the Porte; SaUh Pasha 
received plenipotentiary powers from Constantinople, in con- 
sequence of the letter from the ulema; and, on the condition 
of Mehemet Ali's paying 4000 purses to the Porte, it was decided 
that he should continue in his post, and the reinstatement of 
the beys was abandoned. Fortune continued to favour the 
pasha. In the following month al-Bardisi died, aged forty-eight 
years; and soon after, a scarcity of provisions excited the troops 
of al-Alfi to revolt. That bey very reluctantly raised the siege 
of Damanhur, being in daily expectation of the arrival of an 
English army; and at the village of Shubra-ment he was 
attacked by a sudden illness, and died on the 30th of January 
1807, at the age of fifty-five. Thus was the pasha relieved of 
his two most formidable enemies; and shortly after he defeated 
Shahin Bey, with the loss to the latter of his artillery